Fishing with John

John was the closest thing I ever had to a brother. He was my sister’s first husband,
and came into my life when I was 14.
I learned many things from John. He opened my mind to music, girls, fishing and
manhood. A boy in his early teens benefits greatly from a kind older brother, especially
one with the time and patience to take his younger sibling fishing.
Southend-on-sea was the nearest coastal town to our London home. It was about
30-40 minutes by car, depending on the traffic. We set out really early. It felt like the
middle of the night, and dawn was just breaking as we’d arrive in Southend just in time
to see it wake up.
I think I preferred digging for worms than actually fishing. Before we sat on the pier with
our rods, we’d walk along the beach and dig up rag worms and lug worms in the sand. It
was easy to spot them because there was a small hole and a worm-shaped cast make of
sand. All you had to do was dig somewhere in the middle of the two to find the worm. It
wasn’t long before we had a full bucket.
We spoke about sport and my school and his job and our family, but mostly about girls. I
could talk to John in a way that I couldn’t talk to my dad, and he knew a lot about life.
He helped me to grow up and I looked up to him. Thanks, John.
I never really grew very fond of fishing, though.
 

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