There’s something especially serene about sitting in a tiny vessel on the water, one powered only by one’s own body, while a line disappears under the surface, and you wait, occasionally being rewarded by a slight tugging. When that awaited tug arrives, the mind clears of everything, except on when, and how, to pull the rod and set the hook.
It was awesome to see this in action for twenty or so veterans along with ten or so volunteers in a joint event with IAVA and the SoCal Chapter of Heroes on the Water (HOW) on Mission Bay in San Diego on Sept. 17th. HOW has this operation down to a smoothly running machine. The veteran need not bring anything but him or herself, and maybe some sunscreen. HOW provides the kayaks, the fishing tackle, the bait, the guidance, the mentors, and the food afterwards, where the obligatory fish stories can be told. And they have the interactions just right–one can get close guidance on kayak/fishing if wanted, or distance to explore/fish off on your own, but never beyond help. There’s no pressure, no speeches; just vets on the water.
In addition to the great fishing, good connections were made, introducing members of both organizations to each other, and building our mutually supporting community. We’re looking forward to the next joint event!