No Time Like the Present
Mar 14, 2014 12:31PM ● Published by Kyle Jacobson
“Dad, I’m bored. Let’s go somewhere.” The boy switches off the latest video game.
“Where would you like to go?”
“I dunno. It’s just boring here.” The boy grabs his blanket from the couch. “Let’s go on an adventure.”
Drawn in, the boy’s father can’t ignore how the wearing chores of daily life rust him like a sports car in winter. Perhaps a journey with the boy would reinvigorate the man’s engine. “That doesn’t sound like a bad idea. When should we go?”
The boy’s father grows excited to take the week off. Not so long ago, he and his father would go on week long trips into the wild. Deep in the recesses of his mind he pulls out a memory. A trip to the mountains he and his father had taken in spontaneity. They were always prepared as the boy’s father’s father was born an outdoorsman much like a pelican is a fisherman. Dense sleeping bags, a sturdy lightweight tent, layers of non-absorbent clothing, thick wool socks, waterproof coats, and the nicest pair of boots money could buy, always ready to go on a moment’s notice.
In the basement, the boy’s father finds boxes upon boxes of the old things his father left behind. The boy’s father takes to packing everything. Something falls out of one of the boxes, and pangs against the floor. The boy’s father looks down at his father’s flint. The cold would bite with python teeth, and coil itself around hands and feet. Even the most prepared feared the coils tightening closer to the body’s core. Not only does fire loosen death from the ice, but a fire builds a bond with a boy and his father. With a fire, relationships, past and present, are rekindled.
Behind the boxes sit rusting fishing poles. Fishing the river was a great way to spare some weight, saving adventurers from the burden of carrying extra pounds of food. Drop the line, pick up the end, and let it drop again. Pull the line through the loop seven times. Pull taught the line, and bring down your noosened knot. The man’s eye wells to his father’s words remembered.
Everything packed, the man only has to call work to let him know he’d be gone. He picks up the phone and starts to dial.
The boy’s father looks up. “Yeah?”
“I don’t really want to go anymore.”
That night the two watch the boy’s favorite movie. Before credit’s rolling, the boy falls asleep in his father’s arms. The boy’s father embraces the boy and kisses him on the forehead. “Some other time son. I promise.”