It’s an emotional return for Idaho this morning from a long fifteen days in New Hampshire, a trip where dad was to get a “routine” brain surgery for Parkinson’s disease that would have him home in two days and me back to Idaho in a week. It didn’t go nearly as planned. Instead I’m leaving much later than expected and Dad remains far from himself. The good news however, is that he has shown signs of recovery in the last few days. Enough improvement that he’ll finally leave Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center for a rehab center closer to home.
As to how long he’ll remain in rehab is unknown. We’re not getting our hopes up of him returning home soon. Dad continues to be extremely confused. His eyes only open half way some of the time. He has yet to stand on his own and unfortunately the list of issues goes on. Recovery will be a long journey but after spending my last day with him yesterday I am confident that when I visit in January he might be helping me at the Fly Fishing Show. Let’s hope.
Through the difficult two weeks I managed very little fishing. On several early mornings I tossed some poppers around our dock and the neighboring Goodhue and Hawkins Navy Yard. I picked up a handful of gorgeous sunfish and some smallmouth bass. Last night, my brother-in-law Don and I squeaked in a two hour session in Back Bay, the back side of Wolfeboro on Lake Winnipesaukee. Although fishing wasn’t great, I caught several bluegill and pumpkinseed sunfish, one smallmouth and one largemouth and a few chain pickerel. The last pickerel was a fantastic one of its species. He ate a Ben Byng popper and when I raised him up for a photo, he thrashed and his sharp teeth cut my 0X tippet. He escaped popper and all. I’m not cool with him stealing my popper, but I’m cool that my last cast in NH this year resulted in a big pickerel.
One good thing from this whole experience was my time spent with Mom and the rest of my family. Honestly, since the day I graduated from highschool in 1983 I’ve spent very little time with my Mom. These last two weeks we were together the entire time going back and forth the long drive from Wolfeboro to Lebanon as well as in hotels and eating nearly every meal together. I spent a lot of time with my brother and sister too and saw all my cousins because they came to the family cottage for Labor Day weekend. I got to smack a few whiffed balls and tip some brews with them. You always need to find something good out any bad situation.
I’m presently in flight from Detroit to Salt Lake City and should be pulling in the driveway in Victor late tonight. Then first thing in the morning I’m off to the South Fork on a guide trip as a guest of my friend Gary Eckman. It’s time to get life back on track.