Saturday was the opening day of the 2015 fishing season. Beyond Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter and the Fourth of July, no dates are more important for most Wisconsinites than the opening day of deer season in November and the opening day of fishing season in early May. No weddings, no funerals, no birthday parties or anniversaries are celebrated on these days because no one would come.
In 1961, I made a major exception to my longstanding rule of not allowing anything to interfere with these dates. Ruth and I had set our wedding date for a Saturday in late May of that year. At the time, Ruth worked for the University of Wisconsin-Extension in Wautoma and I worked for the same employer, but in
Green Bay. We had agreed to be married in Wautoma.
The preacher who would marry us said that we must have marriage counseling prior to the event. He picked the first Saturday in May and said we should meet at his parsonage near the Church. I looked at the calendar and then knew why I had the day open—it was opening day of fishing season. I knew Ruth would not have appreciated me backing away from this all important marriage counseling so I said nothing.
I drove down from Green Bay on that beautiful Saturday morning, with thoughts of un-caught trout on my mind. I picked up Ruth and we drove to the parsonage. The pastor’s wife answered the door. We explained why we were there.
“I’m so sorry,” the pastor’s wife said. “He must have forgotten. He’s gone fishing. He never misses opening day.”
THE OLD TIMER SAYS: It’s important to keep one’s priorities in order.
Tuesday, May 5, 10:30. Chilton Library, Chilton, WI Whispers and Shadows.
Tuesday, May 12, 10:00 a.m. Writers Forum, with Michael Perry and John Hildebrand. Eau Claire Regional Arts Center, 316 Eau Claire St., Eau Claire, WIO (Part of Wisconsin Historical Society History Tour).
Thursday, May 14, Appleton Area Sierra Club, 7:00 p.m.
Wednesday, May 20, 6:30 p.m. Barnes & Noble, Madison West. Whispers and Shadows, (Madison Area Launch).
Thursday, May 21, Noon. Beloit Retired Teachers, Boundaries Restaurant. Wit and Wisdom.
Purchase Jerry’s DVDS and his Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fund raiser for them):
The library now has available signed copies of Jerry’s DVDs, Emmy Winner, A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps and Jerry Apps A Farm Story.
Also available are several of Jerry’s signed books including The Quiet Season (on which the DVD A Farm Winter is based), as well as Rural Wit and Wisdom and Old Farm, (which are related to the DVD Jerry Apps a Farm Story). Also available is Jerry’s new novel, The Great Sand Fracas of Ames County.
Contact the library for prices and special package deals.
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division Street