Yesterday my husband drove me to the airport with the top down on my car. The weather in Houston was 65° and sunny. I boarded a flight for Minneapolis where the weather is 10° and partly cloudy. I did this voluntarily. Why? I was invited to go ice fishing. So here I am at dawn, about to get onto a bus for a two hour ride to a wilderness lodge on a frozen lake, pulse pounding with anticipation. Okay, scratch the pulse bit, I need more caffeine.
It’s not that ice fishing was ever on my Bucket List. So why leave the balmy temperatures for snow and cold? Because it’s something I’ve never done before and it sounded like fun.
Many years ago an older woman (she was probably not all that old, I was just very young) said to me, “I wish I’d had the chance to scuba dive and live on a tropical island when I was your age. But I had too many responsibilities and now it’s too late.” Then and there I made a promise to myself—when I was old I’d only regret what I’d done, not what I hadn’t done.
Over the years I’ve made a lot of mistakes through selfishness, lack of experience and just plain stupidity. Those I regret and hope I’ve learned from them. But whenever an opportunity to try something new or have an adventure has arisen, if time and finances have allowed, I’ve almost always said YES!!
Not all of these adventures turned out well—the snowmobile trip from hell, an arrest for piracy (I was innocent, of course!), and an infamous dive that ended with the bends come to mind—but once over, even the worst calamity evolved into a great story over time.
So ice fishing I go today. I’ve got my silk long underwear, cashmere socks, warm boots, scarf, coat and gloves, and I’ve heard the cabin will be stocked with hot coffee and bourbon. Maybe not a death-defying extreme sport, but who knows what lurks under the frozen lake. Hmmmm, I feel a paranormal plot coming on. Let you know on Friday how it goes.