“How on earth did you manage to do this?” Randi asked, reaching for a box of tissues. “How did you manage to get me sick over Skype?”
“Somehow, I think your new golf partner, Steve, had something more to do with it,” I felt bad watching my best friend hack away, just as my family had been for the past 2 weeks. “Try some honey.”
“The last time I felt this crappy was after we went fishing together out on the Cape,” she sniffed and sent her daughter to the kitchen for the honey.
I had to laugh at her timing. Sometimes I think she and I could be twins. We finish each other’s sentences constantly and, millions of times we get on Skype to chat to each other and we find we’re wearing exactly the same colors or styles. I’m a firm believer in there being no such thing as “coincidences”, and clearly Randi and I have a past that goes way back – probably to past lives.
This time, she brought up fishing just as I was going through the “sports section” of our garage, looking for things to pack and things to get rid of. Behind all the bikes and balls and air pumps, leaning against the grey concrete wall, were our fishing poles. Pink and purple ones, and Barbie tackle boxes. I opened up one of the five little pink, plastic boxes. In one was Polly Pockets, the next – hair thingies, and in the third some acorns, dried out helicopter tree things and a diary key. The last two boxes were empty.
“Mom?” Randi’s twelve year old cutie handed her the plastic teddy bear filled with the amber nectar,”I never knew you and Vicky went fishing. You said you hate fishing.”
“You’re mother hates fishing because she can’t catch any fish,” I teased.
The last time Randi and I had been fishing was indeed out on the Cape. We were on a chartered deep-sea fishing trip. And, although I did catch the most fish, the thing that I was most excited about was my ring.
I had gotten engaged a few months earlier, and yes, my ring was spectacular – exactly the one I wanted. The one I had drooled over. It had a band made up of two rows of diamonds all the way around and an impressive stone in the center.
Our boat departed for the open sea at dawn, when ribbons of sherbet colored sky seduced us, luring us out farther and farther out into the choppy water. A couple of deck hands whose jobs it was to hook the chunk of fish flesh onto the hooks, – “master baiters” (yes, they REALLY are called that) – tried to pick us up, and Randi kept having to elbow me in the ribs to stop me from staring at the shimmering diamonds and at least make friendly conversation with the guys.
The sparkle changed somewhat in the midday sun, and again in the evening at sunset. I remember the glittery shards of rainbows bouncing off the sides of the boat as our lines dangled in the water – the way it flashed as I reeled in the hook over and over.
Oh yes, and I did catch some fish, although, that part is kind of fuzzy.
Over the years, as I became a jewelry designer and as my knowledge and collection of pieces have grown, my taste has definitely changed. Diamonds no longer interest me, in fact I find them rather dull.
Instead, I have developed a deep love of rubies. Their attention-commanding, blood red, fire-engine sparkle simply screams “LOOK AT ME!!!!!” The only diamonds I work with now are just accent ones around my more “serious” stones.
Randi delicately administered four heaping teaspoons of honey to herself before screwing on the top to the honey bear container.
“I am going to go look at a house for you later today in Murrell’s Inlet,” she took a swig of her coffee and threw a snack to Cliff, her dog, “there’s water in the back! Maybe we can go fishing?”
“Look into deep sea fishing,” I closed up the box I had filled with our fishing gear and labelled the box with a thick marker, “I don’t want to bait the hook myself.”
I am really looking forward to going fishing again with Randi – this time with all our seven girls. I just know they will have a blast, especially since she has never taken her daughters.
And maybe, just maybe, there will even be some handsome “master baiters” on board for me and Randi. This time around, I suspect my attention will be more on them than on a silly piece of rock.