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Fishin report for Lake Iwanttobethere..


Bobby Bass

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Bobby Bass

WINDY THE WINDMILL is free spinning today, as a matter of fact it has been free spinning since yesterday. The wind has been blowing here at Lake Iwanttobethere for the past day and the forecast of Stormy Clearweather is calling for it to continue. Once the winds are a steady forty miles an hour the blades on the windmill are set to free spool so there is no damage to the generator. The windmill sitting high up off the ground looks like the prop on an over loaded Piper trying to take off. On my drive into the Lodge this morning I noticed a pretty good walleye chop on the water filling the big pot hole on Main Street. Main Street itself is looking pretty bare as there is not a scrap of paper on it and even the dust seems to have been all blown away.

I am working at the Lodge today helping out with the lunch hour and getting ready for the Lodge meeting which as you all know is held on the fifth Tuesday of every month that has five Tuesdays. Tomorrow is also the birthday of my two old dogs Bud and Barney who will both be turning fourteen. The old guys who are brothers will be coming to the Lodge and a brief birthday party will be held for them. Of course they are also there to cash in and collect a few boxes of their favorite dog biscuits. To say the wind has been blowing strongly would be an understatement. At times the wind chimes are banging so loud out on the Lodge deck here that you have to stop talking because you can't hear each other over them.

Pretty good fire going in the fireplace as the sight of roaring flames makes you think you are warm. The sturdy wood logs of the Lodge gives you that sense that you are stronger then nature. Having said that there has been a few times where the wind has gusted so strong that the Lodge seem to shake just a tad. Guys sitting at the bar all stop eating and drinking and looked at each other, shook their heads and went back to what they were doing. Big Maple off to the side of the Lodge is still bare of any leaves and as you watch it seems the trunk is twisting in the wind. The big pines that we tie the bungee to for the ice house fling, if you look at the tops they are swaying at least fifteen feet from side to side but no one is going to climb them to really check. A few drops of rain are falling or it may just be water coming off the tree branches, hard to tell. We were under a freezing rain warning but it did not get cold enough on this side of the lake for that to happen.

The sound of spoons clanking the sides of bowls of chili and the square bottom beers mugs hitting the bar top can't be heard over the constant howl of the wind. Guys stand with one thumb in their suspenders while holding their beer with their other hand and look out the big windows at the weakening ice on Lake Iwanttobethere. They sway a little from side to side like fishermen standing on the stern of a boat. As I scoop on Coney sauce to a row of hot dogs I listen in to guys making comments on the wind and the ice and more than one guy says "At least it aint snowing out!" I tamp onions on the row of Coney's and slide them on to plates two at a time filing orders. Honey Sauce picks up the plates and delivers them out to waiting customers. Thursday is May 1st, here at Lake Iwanttobethere it is "Short Day" I am wondering if the wind is going to die down by then. Other wise I am going to be wearing my long underwear under my shorts here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,886,661}

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Bobby Bass

THIS BIG LOW that is causing all this wind sure does bring back some memories for me. Getting along in years I don't care much for low pressure systems as they bring in winds and aches and pains. When we get a low that hangs around for several days I can feel it in my knees and fingers and am reminded about every football injury I ever had along with a shoulder that talks to me about splitting wood and casting heavy lures in damp and cold spring weather. I didn't say I was complaining about the memories I just don't need to be reminded about them for several days in a row. Back in the day I sprained every finger along with both wrists, ankle sprains and twisted knees. Add a few broken bones to the mix and these cold, damp days are not so welcomed around here. The old dogs Bud and Barney who by the way are officially fourteen years old today share the same feelings. As today all three of us are moving a little slow around the cabin.

Lights were out for a few hours as a tree blew down across the lines, Gary from the power co-op with his crew restored power but didn't have any time for chit chat as they were soon called to another down line. The wind is blowing strong still and it would be a good day to rake up leaves left over from last fall and get them up in the air where the wind would take them to some place other then my yard. But I am not going out any more then I have to. Earlier I went and checked the mailbox and had to take a walk down the road to bring my garbage can back. The wind caught it and it went on a little road trip of its own. I brought it back up and chained it next to the garage so it can't get away again.

The deck is dry and this might be the first time in months that there is no snow on it. Sunshine Ray is forecasting rain in just a few hours so I will make a trip outside to pick up branches and toss them in the fire pit pile. I need to bring a few arm loads of wood in too, still have a small fire burning in the evening to keep the dampness and chill at bay. I really do hope that we are getting all of our weather out of the way here now. It can rain and it can blow it can even snow some more, which by the way is in the forecast. I just want it to all stop in about ten more days. Gardens by this time of the year should have been tilled over and the greenhouse should have shelves filled with plants just waiting to be put into the ground. Yard should have been cleaned up and several fires in the fire pit should have taken the pile of broken branches down. Some hot dogs should have been cooked with a pointed stick and the BBQ should be ready for another tank of propane. None of that has happened yet.

Looks like I will be driving in the rain to the Lodge late this afternoon, meeting day and the old dogs will get some loving, they know how to work a room. As of May 1st Gus will be running the Lodge as I will be busy at the Resort. Will still be in and out but not handling the day to day activities. We did this last summer and it worked out well. Gus is more of an ice fishermen and I prefer open water so the best for both of us. Tomorrow I will be up at the resort and we will be getting ready for our non opener opener. Last I heard Vic said there was still ice covering our little bay and lots of water in the ditches. Still some snow on the ground to but this rain should take care of it. I have some picnic tables that need some work and I hope the wind dies down so I don't have to tie the doors to the wood shop close. Eleven days out from fishing opener here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,894,345}

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Bobby Bass

STILL DRIPPING WATER from the sky here at Lake Iwanttobethere just I am now looking out the window here at the Resort instead of at the cabin. Just had lunch here and decided to take a little time and catch you up on the Lodge meeting that was held last night. Pretty good turnout by the members. I would like to say it was because the dogs Buddy and Barney were having a birthday party but I know some members were just using the meeting to get out of the house. There will not be another Lodge meeting till the end of July so there was a lot for the planning groups to discuss at the end of the meeting. We all agree it has been a long tuff winter and ice fishing was not the best. For the second time in a two years the ice house fling was not held because of the heavy snowfall that arrived at the same time as the lake ice was forming.

We figure it can't happen three years in a row and we are looking forward to a bigger ice house fling next season. Heads nodded in approval and Hammering Hank got up and closed the drapes over the big deck windows, it was snowing outside. Don't want to get into the little tick and tack things of the Lodges goings ons so I will briefly cover some of the things discussed. Lodge membership drive kicks off starting May 1st and even though we lost no members during the last year we are always looking to gain membership. Honey Sauce and Vinnie will be working again or should I say still at the Lodge joined of course by Gus and I will be there from time to time. We also have some part time local kids who work bussing tables and doing odd jobs. The Ladies Auxiliary will continue to rent the small meeting room every Saturday morning. There was some question to why we are renting them the room but that was quickly explained by the fact that all the women of the auxiliary are wife's of Lodge members and this way the members know where their wife's are every Saturday morning allowing the husbands to be elsewhere.

Tye Knotts our local Tacksidurmist and custom rod builder will be holding a six week long rod class in the Lodge basement on Thursday nights. This will be the second class this year as we forgot to tell anyone about the first one. There have been reports of several Lodge members who have broken tips and eyes on their rods that they want to learn how to repair so Tye has agreed to a second class. Speaking of classes next Saturday we will be holding a clinic here at the Lodge parking lot where you can have our local town electrician and Lodge member Twitch look over your boat wiring. There is no charge for current members.

Meeting broke up and groups formed to discuss the fishing contests and 4th of July celebration, BBQ events and if we get the smelt run there will be a smelt tent in the landing area. Members were reminded to say HIYA and give the secret Lodge membership hand shake to receive your Lodge discount at local merchants and not to share the handshake with tourists. During the meeting Bud and Barney wandered through the crowd and got plenty of pats on the back and ear rubs. Over the years the dogs have spent time with just about every member on the wicker couch listening to stories with the total under standment that only a dog can have. Before I left with them I had to push my way into my office as I think just about everyone at the Lodge had brought the old dogs some biscuits. Gus told me he will find a place for the boxes in the store room other wise the dogs will eat them like they are Halloween candy. Ten days till opener and it is raining here at the Resort, this morning there was a half an inch of snow on the railing but the ice is starting to pull away from the shore in our little bay here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,900,966}

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FIGHTING THROUGH A cold here, I had thought I would make it through winter with just that little one I had a few weeks ago but no. The best way to get rid of a cold is still the old fashion break a sweat way so that is what I did yesterday. The road crew with the winds finally calmed down some starting dropping trees along the section of road that is going to get rebuilt. I started up the Dodge and drove it out of its resting place of the past six months and checked the oil and added some air to the tires. I called Chuck and he met me at the end of the drive and we drove to where they were dropping trees and we slipped on our orange safety vests and my battered white hard hats and we went to work.

This of course was all on the up and up as the tree crew was just going to grind up the maples they were cutting and shoot the chips back up into the woods. We eyeballed some nice looking eight to twelve inch limbs and trunks and instead had them load up the Dodge. Made several trips back and forth to my place and Chucks. Unloading was done the old man way as I just backed up to the big pine off the drive and hooked up a chain to the tree with the other end to the end of a log. A quick tug and the log was out of the truck and on the ground. We would do that till the truck was empty and then go back for another load. Over at Chucks we would just use his tractor to pull the logs out. I would say we got maybe two and half cords of maple each and a few Birch trees to. This morning I could hear Chuck with his chain saw cutting them up to stove length and by now I bet he has them already split and stacked by now. I will let mine season a tad before I cut them up.

Today I drove into town to get some cold medicine, the break a sweat way didn't quite work out. I was hacking some still this morning but I do have a couple of cords of free firewood so all was not lost. I made my way over to the Lodge a little after the lunch hour and I parked out back. I came into the Lodge to find a group of guys standing over at the windows. Not unusual but they were looking out the windows that faced the parking lot not the lake. I wandered over to see what they were looking at and I saw several orange barrels out and it looked like a teenager trying to park between the barrels. Gus came around from the bar with a towel in his hands and told me that he had OK'd the local high school's Driver Ed class to practice in the parking lot. I nodded my head in approval as they used to do it on Main Street and they would hold up traffic. Some of them kids you would think it was there first time driving.

As I watched the gal in the Ford was having a little bit of a time getting the right angle, she kept getting closer and closer to an orange barrel behind her and in her blind spot. The guys were coaxing her on which I thought was a little strange till she hit the barrel. I heard a loud bang and a puff of smoke came up from the barrel and the guys cheered and some money exchanged hands. Seems Lodge member and local pyro tec guy Nytelyter had been by and showed the Fellows how they could rig the barrels with a small smoke charge, just to make things more interesting for the teenage drivers. As I watched the teenager put the car in gear and drove off going through the stop sign. More money exchanged hands between the Fellows. I don't think the Drivers Ed people will be using the Lodges parking lot much longer. Got to admit though, when Gus is in charge of things at the Lodge, things happen here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,907,073}

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Bobby Bass

AS YOU READ this somewhere on the other side of Lake Iwanttobethere there is boat bobbing in some very cold water. Three fishermen are sitting with their backs to the wind which also happens to be the same direction that the sun is shinning. Kind of a trade off, the warm sunshine at their backs with the little breeze blowing cold as it comes across the water also hitting their backs. A keeper walleye floats in the live well and from time to time one of the guys will lift the lid to look into the water at the skinny back of the fish and make sure that it is still there.

The three buddies have been fishing together since high school the streak of fishing openers still running. Of course it, the streak had had a few changes over the years. Used to be all three of them would have to be out on opening Saturday, all together in the same boat. But as time went on and things came up the streak was adjusted. Somewhere in the streak it got changed to a day on opening weekend, either fishing Saturday or Sunday would count. Sometimes only two of the three could make it till now the current streak just means that it counts if the boat got wet one of the days of opening weekend. Still a pretty good streak, it has lasted longer then catching a fish and the short streak of catching a limit of fish on opening weekend.

The three guys sit on padded seats, one fishing over the stern, one fishing port and the other going back and forth between the bow and starboard. All are wearing rubber boots with wool socks and after that nothing is the same. Lucky rain coat on one, torn jeans on another. The guy, Joe up in the bow he has his old lucky stainless steal thermos close at hand. The handle broke of back in o4 so now he just has it duck taped on. Several dings and dents and worn off black marker where his daughter drew on it so he would know that it was his. Still works though, as the salesman who sold it to him years ago said "It keeps hot things hot and cold things cold" Joe always brags that it is his lucky charm and many a good thing has happen with the thermos at his side, Jeff always responds the same, "You bring that thermos with you everywhere, sooner or later something good happens to everyone"

Captain Bill sits at the stern, he is the captain mostly because it is his boat and he is the only one that can get the old Mercury to fire up. There is a walleye chop on the lake and that is good they all agree, they ride the boat like wranglers working a cattle drive. They bounce up only to bounce down and the boat rocks a little from side to side. They have a pretty good spot to fish on and Captain Bill does not think they should move. The spot does have some things going for it, not to much wave action, it is in the sunshine. Hardly seen any ice in the last hour and there is that walleye that Captain Bill caught five minutes after they dropped anchor. A boat goes by, slowly as the fishermen in it eye the guys. Captain Bill whispers quietly to his buddies to keep it still, don't want the guys in the passing boat to see how they are fishing. The boat gets close and a few yells are exchanged across the water.

"Geettin any bites?" NA, pretty slow here, How bout you guys? Nothing here either, but certainly is a lovely day out! Waves are exchanged and the boat motors on. Jeff says with a loud whisper. "I got a taker here" Jeff with his rod close to the water watches his line and he can't hold back anymore. He stands up and sets the hook and the rod bows. Captain Bill eyes the water looking for a flash and then looks back at the boat that just passed them, it is turning around. Joe in the bow grabs the net and slips it under a walleye and lifts it over the side. Captain Bill announce that the walleye "Will eat" and Jeff slips it in the well to join the other one. With in casting distance the other boat drops an anchor and now two boats are fishing or should I say riding the waves looking for walleye here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,914,082}

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Bobby Bass

FLIRTED WITH THE fifties over the weekend but today finds us back in the low forties with enough breeze around the knees to make the wind chimes, chime. Over on the far end of the lake fishing season has started and a few Lodge members made the drive. They came back and sat by the fire of the Lodge telling tales of little lakes free of ice with to many fishermen and of big lakes with ice bergs. A few fish were caught and held over head like trophies, trouble is they were small enough that you only needed one hand to do the holding. Sunshine Ray was on KCUM radio this morning with his forecast, not good. Six of the next seven day's look good for rain and two of the days we are looking at some thunderstorms and high winds. He was even reporting that a few listeners called in and said they were seeing snow flakes falling this morning.

The weekend was not a total loss here at the cabin though. I managed to get some small projects done without getting distracted by others. Green house got cleaned up and I put some plants out there to see how they fare. Other plants inside the cabin were transplanted and I started a few other things. Onions were planted in the one of the raise beds and me and Duncan dragged branches to the fire pit. Dodge has been moved to its summer parking space and I looked at the logs we hauled but did not do anything with them. I need to clean out the wood shed before I start to refill it. Over at Chucks I was wrong, he did cut his logs to fireplace length and split them but did not get them stacked. His plan was to get his grand kids over to the cabin on Sunday and he was going to play the logging game with them. That is where they stack the wood and think it is fun. Seems a few of them have wised up to the game and didn't want to play.

Overcast and cloudy here today and shorts aint going to cut it. I went back in the cabin and put some sweat pants back on and got a flannel out of the closet. Dogs were outside and listening hard. Lot of noise out there as the freight train was going by and the engineer was laying on the horn at the crossings. Road crew is working and I heard the sound of trees being chipped up and the sound of chain saws. A couple of times while I was out I could see dump trucks driving down the road through the trees. Not going to be a quiet summer here at all I can see. Looks like only Sundays will be quiet as I am sure they will be working on Saturdays in order to make their deadline. I will be working a little on the Puddle Humper today as the winter tarp needs to come off. I took the wife's clothes line to secure the extra tarp over the boat and now the wife wants her rope back. I suppose I will have to hang it up for her to as I don't think I can get away with just leaving the rope in a nice coil on the clothes pole.

The only nice looking day of the entire week will be Saturday, fishing opener. That will make a lot of business around town happy as we should have a lot of fishermen in town. Pretty iffy if the ice will be out by then but it is pulling back away from shore and in some places it is gone. Bring on the rain and some thunderstorms and that just might be enough to do the job. I would rather that we had a nice stretch of seventy degree days but that is not going to happen, at least not this week. I have a lot of things to do on my do list for the summer and now you can add just about the entire spring list to the summer list. We are all ready getting to the point that I may not be able to wait for nice days to do projects as we may not have many of them kind of days. Not to mention that most nice days should be used to go fishing on. Summer is coming to us, just not today here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,918,646}

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Bobby Bass

RAINING NORTH OF here but not a drop here, I am not complaining but it is still an overcast cold day here at Lake Iwanttobethere. Never did get the wife's clothes line off the Puddle Humper yesterday. I thought about it some and then got distracted with other things. Ended up going shopping with the daughter who had a list of things to get and some of the things she needed were at the same stores that I had to get stuff at to. So we both just decided to go shopping and it pretty much killed the rest of the afternoon. The town of Lake Iwanttobethere does have a mall, not like a big city mall, those are so big you might be able to fit the town of Lake Iwanttobethere into one. Our Mall here is just some shops that are close together and decided to call themselves a Mall. During the summer they put up a big tent that connects four of them together and call it the food court.

I had not noticed but the tent was up for the season and we stopped at the food court. The daughter was hungry for some Chinese food and I bought a soda and a hot dog from a vendor who had his cart parked under the big tent to get out of the cold weather. The hot dog was not good but it was not bad either. Of course hot dogs are the one food that no matter where you eat it and if it is hot or cold it hits the spot if you are hungry and outdoors. The daughter ate her food but she got up and took the walk to the far end of the mall to get some special coffee at the coffee shop. You know one of them four dollar foam cups with express this and moco that with a twist and a swirl and a hint of mint. I don't drink it myself but the tourists sure seem to like standing in line in the summer to get theirs.

So I am sitting back in my chair doing what I do best, people watch. I sip on my soda and watch the comings and goings of people at the food court. First thing I notice is that in the middle of the day there is sure a lot of old people in the food court, I mean older then me. After awhile I figure they are power walkers and they are using the food court as there meeting place. I can't tell if they are getting ready to walk or have just finished walking. Of course the food court is not a very big place to walk and now I notice them some of them are doing laps of the place. Almost like a relay as some sit down at tables while other get up to take there place walking around the mall. I did notice there are a lot of older ladies who wear glasses and not as many men. But I also noticed a few men walking into tables so maybe they were just not wearing their glasses.

A few teenagers in the food court, they all seem to have their heads down as they sit at tables busy texting their friends sitting across from them. As I sit and watch from time to time I take a sip from my can of soda and I notice when I put the can back down on the table top the table tips. I don't think to much of it because I know why the table tips, The legs are uneven on purpose, it keeps tourist from getting too comfortable and keeps people from lingering to long in the food court. The daughter walks by my table, one hand holding on to her foam coffee cup and the other hand holding on to her phone. Her thumb moves quickly across the face of the phone, no doubt texing someone something very very important. She hits send and stops to look up searching for our table. She turns and sees she has walked past the table and says nothing but does smile in that way kids smile at their parents when they do something wrong and they both know it.

I stand up as she approaches and as we walk to the end of the food court I drop my can into the recycling bin and step aside as two older lady's, arms pumping power walk past me. I get a nod from one and the other one looks right through me. I think she is in "The Zone" and I think to myself that I am not ready yet to join the walkers at the mall here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,922,357}

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INSTEAD OF COUNTING days we are down to counting hours away from the opening of fishing season here at Lake Iwanttobethere. We still have ice, I know that must come to a surprise to some of you as I am sure a lot of you think that the weather here is always perfect. Nope, that is not true. I am looking out the den window right now and I can see a big sheet of ice covering the center of the lake. Ice has pulled away from shore and I suppose you could launch and motor along the shore for quite a distance. If the wind was to shift on you that might make things a little interesting trying to get back to your trailer. But we still have time for the ice to melt some more and if we get the thunderstorms that Sunshine Ray is forecasting for later this afternoon that might help. I was at the Lodge last night and the Fellows were trying to locate old fridges and washing machines. They were busy with one of their ideas and I listen in and got most of the idea before I moved on.

First off we all know how powerful lightning can be. The saying lightning never hits the same spot twice is because it does not have to. Well the Fellows after hearing Sunshine Rays forecast came up with an idea. They are looking to drag old metal fridges and washing machines out onto the ice of little bay where they have their trailer. I am interested because the little bay they talk about having their trailer at is where I have my resort and they have their trailer at my resort. Well the idea is to haul the stuff out onto the ice and spread them around some. The lightning hits the appliance, vaporizes the appliances creating heat which in turn melts the ice and we have the little bay ice free and ready for fishing opener. I just nodded as they told me their plan and I had but one question. "Where did ya come up with this idea" Tiny said that Elmer and Vic said they used to do it all the time back in the old days.

I was not hearing anyone volunteering any appliances so I figured I was OK and the bay would be safe. I was just at the Lodge to pick up a few things and soon I was back in the Tahoe and heading to the Resort. A few hours earlier and I had been at the cabin stacking wood. My good friend Chuck had taken pity on me and brought his log splitter over and we sawed up the logs we got from the road construction project and Chuck split them and made a nice pile right in front of the wood shed. He took the splitter back to his place and I took my time stacking wood back into the back of the shed. I took my time simply because I don't work fast any more. Between frequent breaks I notice the sky getting dark as it came across the lake. Duncan was outside with me but he headed to the back door of the cabin and jumped up to ring the doorbell. The wife came to the door and let him in just as the first piece of hail fell from the sky to bounce off the deck. As I stood and watched the hail marched across the deck and then the yard and started bouncing off the wood at my feet.

I was thinking that Duncan was a traitor and left me out in the hail when a good size piece clipped me on my ear and it stung like a bee sting. I stepped back under the roof of the shed and watched as the ground was soon covered in hail. Hail came down the valley roof of the cabin and flowed like a white rain out onto the deck. The hail lasted for but a minute or two and it was done. Some heavy rain few for a few more minutes and I discovered the shed roof was not as dry as I thought it was. The rain ended and Duncan burst out of the cabin door made a beeline to me and gave me his lab look "Hey, did ya see that" I reached down and patted him on his side and told him thanks for the heads up buddy. As he walked away I reached down and picked up a piece of hail and tossed it at his rump. He took off running back to the cabin, no doubt thinking the hail was coming back to Lake Iwanttobethere {1,929,165}

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MORNING BEFORE OPENER and I think this one will be remembered. Maybe not for good fishing but it will be one of them openers you look back and talk about the weather. I am at the Resort this morning, actually spent the night here. Will be our second season here and all the co owners are here working at getting things ready for the few guests that we have coming in. This morning I spent some time with a cup of steaming coffee ducked under the eve standing on the deck. The dust till dawn flood light at the peak of the Clubhouse was still on at eight in the morning. Might have to do with the fog that was hanging in the air making it hard to see much past the shoreline. Water was dripping off tree branches to land on the ground or making splats sounds on any hard surface.

Yesterday Hammering Hank had graded the road as best as he could, filled in some ruts and potholes. Chuck with the tractor had moved picnic tables to their places and Skinny positioned chairs and hung clothes line. DOC Burriem has moved in to one of the cabins and has his car tied to the railing. The old DOC will not give up his trademark of tying his car to a post just like he used to do to his buggy back in the day. Already this morning Marv was up before everyone baking in the kitchen. The smell of rolls and bread is in the air and hangs low mixing with the morning fog and the lite rain that still is falling. Some of the Fellows trickled in late last night, their camper is quiet this morning but I see Tiny left his driver's window open on his truck so that should be interesting when he discovers it.

Elmer is with Vic in the Bait Room, they are checking minnow tanks and packing night crawlers into round cardboard bait boxes. Normally my grand kids would be in on the action but with some snow still on the ground out here the picking of night crawler has been non existent The main room of the Resort is clean and all of the booths are open for business. Vic has moved his stuff back into his apartment and booth number one is now open for business, but Vic has his coffee mug sitting on the table, still making a claim to it. Just a few trailers due to come in, no campers or I should say no tent campers are coming. We don't have any dry ground for a tent to be set up on. Hammer Hank did get some gravel moved around down by the old access, it is not in the best shape but if you want to launch a small boat it is a lot closer then having to drive around the lake.

Duncan came up to the Resort with me and he spent a few minutes checking out the grounds before coming back up on the deck to shake and spray water against my legs. He then sat down leaning against me and looking out at the grounds we both just watched the rain fall. I could hear a few robins and I looked down at Duncan to see which way his head was cocked to see where the robins were at. Marv came to the door and held the coffee pot in his hand. I reached out with my mug and we met halfway. A new puff of coffee steam leaped up from the mug and I nodded my thanks. Duncan seize the open door moment to leave me and follow Marv back inside. No doubt after shaking some more water off he is in the kitchen waiting to see if Marv will drop a donut hole on the floor in his direction.

With a fresh steaming mug of coffee I pull my collar up a little higher around my neck and try to look out at the little bay. I see open water but I know there is still some ice just beyond my eye sight. I can hear the sound of metal on metal up in the pole barn. I look that way and I see the doors are slightly open. I did remember Chuck talking about some tractor problems and I can hear what I think is a hammer being used with some force and a little yelling. The hammering stops and I stand and listen waiting for it to start up again. After awhile I give up, must be an electrical problem. The phone rings and I reach in to my pocket and pull out the portable, That's my job today. GOOD MORNING, THIS IS THE RESORT HERE AT Lake Iwanttobethere {1,930,030}

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Bobby Bass

FISHING OPENER HERE at Lake Iwanttobethere has been a surprise. Not the fishing but the weather has been the best two days that we have had in months. Today it was supposed to be raining but as I take a break here in the Main Room of the Clubhouse there is actually some sun shinning and even though there is some wind it is sixty out and that feels like a slice of heaven. A lot going on here at the Resort so I will just have to touch on a few things that have been happening. Friday night we watched hockey till about ten minutes before fishing opener started. The game ended, in a win and the guys who were already dressed in an assortment of winter and duck weather clothing made their way down to the docks and bobbing boats and headed out into the little bay.

During the day on Friday we did get a second dock in and the place did get busy with a few RV's showing up and we were busy moving boat trailers around and setting up some camping spots. Saturday the weather was warm and sunny and there was plenty of places to hide out of the wind so guys stayed out on the water for most of the day. Fishing was not great, it was not even good. OK It was bad but after the winter that would not end any reason to be out on the water was a good one. Last night was supposed to be a fish fry for supper but all that we had was a skinny northern and no matter how many tatters Marv had to fry up it was not going to be enough. The backup plan was to start up the grill and we did hot dogs and hamburgers. The evening stayed nice so some guys who did not have enough of fishing went out for a boat ride. There was no evening bite so they just returned saying they went on a boat ride.

Bon fire was burning on their return and soon they had a beer in hand and feet up on chucks of wood and sat back in chairs and enjoyed the beginning of fishing season. Sparks lifted skyward and dogs made the rounds. Plans were drawn up for today's fishing which was supposed to have some rain but when everyone got up it was dry and the sun was out. "To the boats" was the battle cry after a big breakfast of pancakes and scrambled eggs. Sausages and slabs of ham with a side order of bacon filled most plates. Guys had been waiting for months for this weekend and diets were forgotten and with no wife's looking over shoulder's orders for sandwiches were placed with extra Mayo. The water of Lake Iwanttobethere was cold so there was little demand for ice. Guys were just floating their sodas in the live wells which were more then cold enough.

A few guys came back in for lunch, I had not noticed but the sky is starting to cloud up some and the temperature has dropped a few degrees. I was in the Bait Room for awhile there helping out Elmer. Sold a few scoops of minnows and gave away some free advice. Of course I am guessing like everyone else is right now as to where and what the fish are doing. From what I have heard fishing is slower then slow and the water is cold but still a nice day to be on it. DOC Burriem and Vic are spending some time together. I spotted them looking over Vic's boat that is not yet in the water but is ready to get wet. Chuck is up in the pole barn working on a trailer that one of the Fellows brought in without working lights. He has his own boat up there that he is working on but he got sidetracked.

I am leaving here in a few hours, have to be back at the cabin for the Mother In Laws surprise Mothers Day BBQ. Kids and grand kids are all coming over so I was told that I should show up to. I think it might start to rain by then so I will not be missed here, besides I can use the time to work on the Puddle Humper, I still don't have the tarp off yet here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,932,266}

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Bobby Bass

THERE ARE JUST some smells that seem to trigger memories or in general just put a smile on your face. Bacon and coffee are right up there with making guy's grin and making mouths water a little. Baking bread or pies cooling on a window sill are a couple of favorites of mine. Now if you take the coffee and frying bacon smell outside and add a wood fire you have a guarantee memory maker. But for me the one smell that is a sure bet to get my mind wandering is the smell of charcoal. The smell of burning charcoal seems to travel farther then other smells and if it is riding the wind you can be miles away and smell it. Charcoal is a long simmering smell that hangs in the air and brings the smell of coffee and bacon on its coattails. An educated nose can pick out steak sizzling or hot dogs burning as the smell of charcoal is the platter that other smells rest on.

Yesterday evening I was at the cabin and I was doing hamburgers and hot dogs on the propane grill. Cabin was full of grand kids and nieces and their parents and I was just outside with the old dogs making supper. With a platter of meat done I brought it into the cabin and set it on the counter and then slipped back outside. It of course was Mothers Day but it is also a silent Sunday and I knew I would be left alone outside. I got out a cigar and sat down on the swing that was some what protected from the wind and was just getting ready to put flame to the cigar when I smelled charcoal in the air. At first it was just a teasing whiff but as I turned my head and sniffed some more I could smell it coming from Chucks place, or at least from Chucks direction. I held off lighting my cigar and instead I just took in the smell of the charcoal and maybe the hint of steak. Somebody was eating well tonight I thought.

Wood fires are good and burning leafs in them is right up there, but you have the wood smoke that always follows you around the fire. Charcoal gives you all the smell but none of the smoke to make your eyes water. Still wood fires have their time and place but anytime seems to be the right time for a charcoal fire especially if you have a nice thick steak that is just begging to be cooked. At the Resort we have been tossing a bag of charcoal into the evening fire, a trick we learned from another resort owner. Seems that charcoal smells seems to do wonders for late night snacks which is good for business. I know of the trick but I find myself falling for it to as I head to the kitchen for one of Marv Kaiser rolls that are split open and then filled with egg salad.

Weather forecast is not a good one for the week, rain and cool weather is not going to be the best for fishing. Guys will go out and chalk it off to paying your dues. All things even out in the end and as the summer goes on it will get warmer and fishing will get better. For now we will gather around the evening fires to keep warm and because when you are out fishing or camping having a fire is just another way of making a memory.

I got side tracked last night and didn't get to finish writing my story. I have a gang of nieces that run between four and six years old. Wearing an assortment of jackets and sporting pigtails their parents sent them all outside to keep Papa company. My granddaughter lead them all out to show off where her Papa has promised to build her a playhouse and she told them they are all invited to come sleep over. I sat on the deck and was bombarded with questions. I felt like I was at a zoning committee hearing. What color will it be, how many windows, will it have swings and a trap door, it should have a ladder and maybe a climbing wall. Will dogs be allowed and how about the cousins, is it girls only? A drop of rain fell and I welcomed it, I marched them all to the cabin door and opening the door I shouted to parents inside that it is starting to rain and closed the door behind them. I sat back down on the swing and then it did start to rain here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,933,185}

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FIFTY -TWO DEGREES out, a slight wind under threating rain clouds. Yesterday was a wash out as the rain fell all day and the wind was blowing strongly. Like an outdoors pressure washer everything that was outside got wet. Even the siding on the cabin was wet from the ground to the eves on all four sides which is rare. This morning I went out to pick up branches and Duncan walked with me. The old dogs sat on the deck each facing a different direction like sentries. After a few minutes Duncan abandoned me to take up his post at the boat house. A robin has been working at building a nest on top of wood stored in the rafters and after Duncan saw me pull it down once he is now guarding the area from the robin.

A lovely fall day as the air is cool and I have heard a couple of grouse drumming. I am saying two because they seem to be having a contest and are drumming from two different locations. The lake is quiet and I have seen no geese this morning. I did go down and pick up my mail and the morning paper. Both Jessie the paper boy and Mark the mailman are now delivering by way of boat. The last of the ice went out over the weekend and that was all that was holding them back. Greenhouse is full of seedlings as I transferred just about everything from inside the cabin out to the house over the weekend. Rain barrel is full and I am going to go to town and buy another one for the new shed. First I will have to go see Big Earl and get a rain gutter and a down spout. The second rain barrel will save me walking as I will be able to water plants in the garden using it.

Way behind on work that needs to be done outside. The ground is soaked and you have to wear boots to keep your feet dry. The need list keeps growing as I walk around the place looking at things that need to be done and just keep adding to my list of things that need to be bought in order to get things done. Oil changes on the Dodge and Tahoe and I have to check the records to see if the lawn tractor is also do. Broken end on a garden hose and I have to wrap the two little apple trees and the plum tree where the rabbits chewed on them over the winter. I was checking the plum tree that was chewed right down to the snow line and Duncan was right there sniffing away. I told him it was his job to keep them rabbits away from the trees and he wagged his tail and talked to me like labs do. I think he said he would get right on it but then he ran back to guard the boat house from the robin, he is just so busy to.

A few drops of rain fell and I retreated to the covered swing, the old dogs had already been let inside the cabin by the wife. Duncan sat under the roof of the boathouse eyeing the robin who was sitting on a fence post with a piece of dry grass in her beak. They patiently sit and watch each other waiting the other one out. A few more drops of rain fall and they are big enough to be heard on the swing roof. I pat the seat and Duncan comes running to jump up and sit alongside of me. No sooner does he leave the boat house and the robin leaves the fence post and goes back to building the her nest under the roof. I don't tell Duncan instead I just rub him behind the ear and tell him he just has so much to do. Yup it feels like a nice fall day out, to bad this is supposed to be spring here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,933,948}

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SAME OLD STORY here weather wise. I just came in and it is trying to rain out. Overcast sky and there is enough wind to make it feel cold out. Of course just a few months ago fifty degree weather would have had us running outside in tee shirts and shorts but now fifty just feels damp and cold. Yesterday I did get part of the clothes line that is holding the tarp on the Puddle Humper off. Only part of it as I just needed to get under the outer tarp so I could take some measurements of the front deck. I am going to add a step in front of the deck so I can put small tackle boxes in the step and because I need a step to the front deck. Not young anymore and taking that high step in a walleye chop has lead to a few interesting moments the last few seasons balance wise.

I had already gone down to the General Store and bought myself some indoor outdoor carpeting to kind of match what I have in the boat. I will make the storage step and cover it in carpet. At the same time I am going to make a couple of dog steps for inside the cabin. Bud who has shorter legs then Barney is having a hard time getting up into my bed. He can still do it but he has to take a run and it sometimes it ends like a plane crashing on an aircraft carrier deck. I am the safety net and eighty plus pounds of dog rolling into you can be a surprise when you are sleeping. Also going to make a step for his favorite chair in the living room not to the approval of the wife who was figuring that she was finally going to keep the dogs off the furniture.

Weather is going to clear some but we still have some of these cool wet days in store for us. A pretty good forecast by Sunshine Ray as the odds are with him that the weather will change. Vic has had his boat in the water and fishing has been poor for him on our little bay. He now goes out in the morning to pick up our mail and paper from the point where it is left. DOC Burriem has been riding along as he and Vic have become fast friends and Vic is going to teach him how to fish. Old DOC has been to busy delivering babies for most of his adult life and now it is time to have a hobby. Matter of fact I think I totally forgot to mention that DOC has now become an employee of the Resort. I found him the other day sitting on one of the Resort docks in a wicker chair fishing. We exchanged HIYA's and made some small talk. We got around to DOC telling me he needs something to do, he just can't sit around waiting for me or one of the Fellows to hurt themselves.

I told him the only job I had was that of a dock boy and that is more something a teenager would do. DOC thought it over and said that he could be a dock boy what does he have to do? I came up with a few duties off the top of my head and said "The dock boy needs to be at the dock to assist people loading and unloading their boats" DOC replied, "OK I can tell them how to do that." Hmmm, the dock boy may be asked from time to time to clean fish. "DOC answered with, "I am pretty good with a knife" I nodded. Coming up with nothing else I just looked out at the water and DOC asked "So the job is mine?" Tossing up my hands and thinking I might regret this later I said "Job is yours" DOC looked at me over the top of his glasses and asked "What's it pay?" I thought for awhile and made him an offer of free bait, he accepted and now DOC Burriem is DOCK Burriem here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,940,778}

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A COUPLE OF rainless days and some sunshine thrown in sure does give a guy a different attitude. Been busy here the past few days and I have a little color in my cheeks, I think it might be sunburn or maybe a little wind or both. Been making trips to town picking up supplies and checking in at the Lodge and also out at the Resort. Had to stop at the Gas-N-Go and buy gas, during the winter I could go a couple of weeks before I would have to drop a few Jackson's in the tank but it had only been a few days since I bought gas last. Also had to get some gas in the small tank for the tiller and for the garden tractor. I have not started either one yet but now I have gas for them.

Gus at the Lodge said business has been brisk at sundown and then again at midnight, the smelt are finally running at Mystery River and it seems to be the best from sunset till about midnight. The dip netters have been coming in showing off five gallon pails of the little silver fish and the pink fish cleaning house has its light on late into the night as some guys have been down there cleaning. Yesterday the smelt tent went up, the stuff has been sitting down there in a trailer but there was a pretty good chance we were not going to have much of a run there. With the tent up you can smell the deep fryers going and I got side tracked by my nose and went and ate lunch there yesterday. Pretzel wagon was there, chained to a maple tree along with the mini donut wagon. Jeanie and Stan had their ice cream/tackle truck parked close to the water and just a short walk from the smelt tent. I must admit after the smelt I wandered over with just the intent to say HIYA but I ended up getting a two scoop double butterbrickle on a sugar cone.

Back at the cabin here the granddaughter spent the night and this morning we spent some time just planting flower seeds. We filled about three hundred pods that will start their life in the green house and the get transplanted into pots around the cabin in a month or so. Way behind on planting them but still way cheaper then buying flats of flowers from down at Diggers. Of course that will not stop the wife from going down to Diggers and buying some flats so she can at least get started putting out her hanging baskets. I did pick up another rain barrel but I still have to install a gutter on the new shed. Granddaughter wanted me to do that today, she is such a slave driver. I distracted her with a walk over to Chuck's to check on the chickens.

By one she was headed back home and I had some quiet time as the wife was out hitting a few rummage sales. I made myself a snack and as I came out on to the deck a rabbit took off. Guessing it must have thought there was something to eat or smelled the seeds. Duncan didn't need any commands from me, he took off after that rabbit leaving some new scratches in the wood of the deck. Of course he didn't catch the rabbit, but he might have at least startled it a tad. Rabbit made a zig zaged beeline to the tree line and was gone. Speaking of bees I saw a half dozen of them as I sat and ate my lunch. Big as your thumb they came one at a time lumbering along like big bees do. They were loud too as even Bud who was sitting on the deck waiting to see if anything fell off my plate had to turn his head at the buzzing they were making.

I was thinking about sitting in the covered swing for a spell but I knew if my granddaughter was here she would be telling me I needed to go water plants in the greenhouse so I did that. Sun is getting a little lower in the sky and when I came out of the greenhouse I went and put a sweatshirt on, just a little cool breeze there. Forecast seems to be changing everyday but it looks good to get out fishing by the middle of next week. I think I will spend tomorrow working on the Puddle Humper. I did make my new step/tackle box for the boat. It will let me store 12 plastic boxes of tackle inside it and give me a step up to the front casting platform. Well break is done I need to go out and start a fire in the pit and burn some branches from the garden. Think I might lite a cigar and sit a spell while I am at it, done enough today here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,943,172}

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AS USUAL SILENT Sunday was not too silent, it was not me, I did my part. I was alone as the wife was out and the daughter was working, just me and the dogs so I had no one to talk to. A very nice day weather wise as the red needle on the bass thermometer hanging on the side of the cabin was bouncing between seventy-six and seventy-seven degrees. Been a long time since I have seen a seventy degree day. I started off my day by hanging a section of rain gutter on the new shed and surprisingly I actually had all the parts I needed and it went together just fine. Rain barrel was the next thing to put together and they have improved on the spigot as they now screw in. I moved the bricks to set the rain barrel on under the down spout and patted myself on the back.

Next up was the ten foot length of hose I was going to add to the rain barrel so I could run the hose inside the garden and put another shut off on the end. This way I would be able to fill my watering can right inside the garden and would not have to walk around the fence. I had a plan and it was all coming together till I realized that I cut off the male end of the hose instead of the female end, I needed two male ends on the length of hose and I had only bought one male replacement. Since it was silent Sunday I didn't say a thing, no curse words no loud yells or screams I just sucked it up and said nothing. Besides there was no one else home that I could blame this error on so I didn't have anyone to yell at. I did fix the problem in a few minutes as I just went and took one of the short hoses from the wife's flower bed and used that for my rain barrel project.

During this time I did have a fire going in the fire pit and when I walked by which it seem was like every few minutes I would feed the fire with branches from the Maple tree I trimmed last fall. The tree was growing so big it was starting to cast shade across my big garden, something that was not planned on when it was planted twenty-five years or so ago. With the water barrel project complete I went into the cabin and got myself a couple of polish sausages and sharpening a stick I threaded the sausages on and then cooked them over the coals at the edge of the fire pit. A little burnt on one side and slightly exploded on the other side they tasted just fine with a cold Hamms. With lunch out of the way I went to work on picking up the yard. With three dogs they don't always make it to the woods and either myself or the wife have to go around the yard with a shovel and a bucket just like everyone else does that owns dogs.

Here is the bad part of the day, I found a bucket that the wife was using and had not emptied, there was about four gallons of dog waste in the bucket along with rain water from a few days ago. This was not a pleasant smell to be near. I carried the bucket up to the pit at arm's length and it being silent Sunday there was no one I could complain to so I didn't. But after I got rid of the bucket I didn't feel so bad at all about taking the wife's length of hose.

With the yard picked up I decide to sit on the deck and sip on a beer and call it a day. Bud and Barney came out to join me and Duncan who had been with me all day. Duncan was my silent foremen just watching me as I worked. I sat on the deck and that is when I noticed how noisy it was out. Seagulls were flying overhead one by one calling to the one behind or the one just ahead of them. Crows were making their way flying in twos and cawing. Eddie and Ed the squirrels were busy chasing each other through the cedars making their way to their nest in the big maple. Wind chimes were lightly banging away and I could hear a wood pecker banging his head off. The barking of a purse size dog could be heard coming from the other side of the lake and someone was pounding a hammer on what sounded like some sheet metal. A lumbering, bumbling, bumble bee flew low over my head before taking a right and disappearing around the corner of the cabin. With the sun getting low in the sky I was thinking everyone was calling it a day here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,944,895}

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MONDAY NIGHT INTO Tuesday mornings forecast didn't pan out. Stormy Clearweather was saying there would be some light showers over night. Shortly after midnight I felt Barney climb into bed with me. Eighty pounds of lab can be felt as he flopped down next to me and I knew something was up. The fourteen year old dog has never liked thunderstorms and no sooner did he make himself comfortable next to me then I saw the first flash of lightning through the blinds on the bedroom window and then counted to myself, one Mississippi, two Mississippi, three Mississippi and then I heard the boom of the thunder. Barney whined and I patted him on the shoulder and called him a big baby.

So now that I was awake I laid in bed and starting doing the math in my head of how much rain would need to fall in order to fill the new rain barrel. The shed roof is only 9x9 so I was adding up square feet and converting it into inches and then divided that into the size of a ten gallon aquarium which I just happen to know the size of and I came up with that it would have to rain a lot. A couple of rapid flashes of light and some long drawn out rumbles of thunder and I gave up on the math and just watched as rain pelted the window and Barney tried to get even closer to me. Bud was sleeping on the floor and I felt his weight as he climbed up into the bed to join the crowd. The wife came into the bedroom with Duncan, they had stayed up late to watch a movie and now Duncan who never is one to miss out on anything jumped into bed and everyone had to rearrange themselves. With no room in the bed the wife just said she would sleep in the other room and left us boys to watch the rain.

Come Tuesday when I got up the deck was covered in seed pods from trees and I checked the new rain barrel and found it was almost full. My math had been correct and it must have rained a lot. A quick check of the garden and any plan on working in it were put on the shelf, to wet. I eyed the Puddle Humper and thought about doing some work on it but I have a long list of other things that need to be done first. First was I needed to add another shelf in the greenhouse, have ran out of room and I have plants that need to go outside. I have just enough room to put in a shelf that will be higher then my head so I won't walk into. I spent the afternoon rearrange and moving plants and the new shelf was soon filled. I did put the boat batteries on the charger in the basement though so I am that much closer to getting them in the boat.

Made a trip down to Diggers Garden Center, today is me and the wife's four hundred and forty fourth month wedding anniversary, that comes out to thirty-seven years if you don't want to do the math. Had the daughter put together a flat of flowers for me and even though I have a mess of flowers growing in the green house they are not close to blooming. Besides I don't have a clue what to get her so when in doubt, buy flowers. I stopped in at the Lodge as I was planning on eating dinner down at the Smelt Fry and I just checked in quick to get my mail and say HIYA to Gus. Fellows were all sitting at the round table and I exchanged HIYA's with the guys and we chatted for a couple of minutes. I got asked when I was going to get out fishing and I told them of the progress or lack of it in getting the Puddle Humper out on the water. I mentioned I was charging batteries and Gary told me wisely that I should have charged the boat batteries in the boat because once you fill them up with electricity they are heavier. I just nodded at that and thought it over some when Steve said "Yup, same thing with putting air in tires, I always let the air out before I move any of my tires"

So today I am building some steps for the dogs, still have not gotten around to doing that. Have to transplant some seedlings and maybe the garden will be dry enough to start working in. Wife is not home, I have a feeling she is probably out searching for a wedding anniversary present for me. I got a feeling that I will be getting some flowers here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,946,325}

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YESTERDAY WAS MY wedding anniversary and we celebrated like we have been doing since most of the kids moved out of the cabin, alone. I spent the day working on my to do list and got steps made for the old dogs to make it easier for them to climb into beds and also made a short chair in the living room. Duncan helped out with the chair as Barney was already up in and old square chair that I hate but the wife brought home from some rummage antique sale that she went to a couple of years ago. Barney being longer legged then Buddy claims the chair as his own but Duncan likes to sit in it too. Well Barney was already in the chair when Duncan made a running jump up in to it and they broke a leg on the chair. The wife was upset and wanted me to haul it out to the shop and fix it but as I flipped the chair over I pointed out they, the dogs had split the wood where the short chair leg screws in. I told her it was heading for the fire pit but as I started towards the door I got an idea. I unscrewed the other three legs and brought the chair back into the living room and set it back on the floor, We now have a grand kid/dog chair at the perfect height.

Four hundred and forty-four months me and the wife have been married and yesterday the phone was ringing with congratulations. Thirty-seven years seems to be a long time these days and the ladies who called made sure to make that point when I would answer the phone before turning it over to the wife. After awhile I just stop answering the phone and just let the wife handle it. Had plans on working on the Puddle Humper but didn't get to it. Instead I ended up planting the flowers I bought the wife into a couple of baskets and did some more transplanting in the green house. I know for a fact that thirty-seven years ago I never thought on my wedding anniversary I would be spending my time working in flower dirt.

Today as long as the rain holds off I will get the tiller up and running and with some luck make a couple of raised beds in the garden. Mostly though I am going to get the tarp off the Puddle Humper and start doing some cleaning and bring batteries up from the basement. Trees are budding up and some green is showing. I am still in the winter mode as there is just no urgency in getting the boat out onto the water just yet. Of course it always takes longer to wake the boat up then it takes to put it asleep. Another thing on my list is I need to update my fish finder software I just saw that on my calendar, must have wrote that down last fall, the boat list keeps getting longer.

Last night after checking off several things on the to do list I went out and sat on the deck. As is our tradition we had a nice meal to celebrate the anniversary. The wife put together some potato salad and a tossed salad, baked some rolls from scratch and made an apple pie, I did the important part and cooked the steaks that she carried out to me. We sat and ate on the deck with the dogs at our feet and listen to the evening around us. Robins calling back and forth and seagulls flying overhead to where ever they are always headed. Peppers started singing and the best part not a single mosquito made an appearance. The wife had a glass of wine and I had a Hamms, with the sun setting behind the wife I looked up and said "Will you look at that, now that there is one pretty sight" The wife kind of closed her eyes and tilted her head in my direction. I then whispered "I wonder if I will have enough time to go get a camera" The wife said "You don't need a camera, I'm here all the time" I pointed a finger and she turned to look behind her, there was Duncan in a full point, back straight, tail up and front foot lifted he was rock steady looking in the direction of the tree line. I never saw the wooden salad spoon coming, here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,947,068}

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I CAN HEAR a robin singing outside my window here this morning as I am taking a little break from watering plants in the greenhouse. A few hours ago I spotted Chuck and his wife rolling down their driveway with the boat on the trailer behind them. The wife asked me if I wanted to go with but I told her no, to much work to do around the cabin. Yesterday I spent the day working on the to do list and getting sidetrack. No sooner would I get one project done and start on another when I would get sidetracked with something related to the task I just started. Sure does seem to be a lot of things that need to get done before I can get things squared away and start fishing.

I won't waste your time telling you everything that I got done yesterday as I am sure you have done the same thing when you are working on your lists. The Puddle Humper does have its tarps off and is now breathing in some fresh air. I took the hose to it and washed some of the winter dust off so I guess I can say that I have gotten it wet this year. Stormy Clearweather is calling for some summer weather here for the next ten days so I have been busy tilling up some patches in the yard that need some grass seed. Duncan has been helping digging holes for me while the old dogs want to know why I keep interrupting their naps. Fire pit was burning all day as I kept feeding it and there seems to be an endless supply of branches that I keep picking up or Duncan keeps bring out of the woods.

Memorial Day is just a few days away and the wife asked me if it was safe to go ahead and put the winter snow shovels away. I don't know if she was serious or if it was just her way of adding another thing for me to do. I went ahead and put the snow shovels in the back of the garage along with the ice chipper. I would have exchanged the tiller for the snow thrower but the snow thrower died in the middle of winter and now I have an empty space where the tiller was. Tiller is still running strong but I better not brag until I get the gardens all done. I had some wood to spilt yesterday and I got the ax out and it was pretty dull, I took it over to the table on the deck and sat down for a breather. On one of the other projects I had used a flat file and it was sitting right there on the table so I went ahead and started to sharpen the ax old school. The wife seeing me asked if I don't normally just take the ax to the shop and use the grinder. I told her yes but every once and a while you need to do things old school so you don't forget how.

Resting the ax on the table top I used the flat file to take out the burs and after awhile it started to take on an edge. I took my time doing it and the wife brought me a glass of lemonade to sip on as I worked. I was thinking to myself this was just the way old grandpa would do it, less the lemonade. With the lemonade gone and the ax now with an edge I took it over to the wood pile and split a few chunks of Maple. The ax worked just fine so I stuck it in the splitting stump and walk away. The wife seeing me heading back to the deck asked why I had not finished splitting the wood and I just told her if I split it all then I have to stack it all and tomorrow is another day here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,948,917}

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Bobby Bass

LAKE IWANTTOBETHERE IS known for its weather extremes and yesterday was a good example of that. Where my cabin is at the air temp was a pleasant seventy degrees, at the Lodge it was forty-six and out at the Resort it was eight-four. A good reason why I have a duffle bag of clothes in the Tahoe because you never know when you are going to have to go from shorts to sweat pants to rain bibs to arctic wear. I think on Friday I might have gotten a tad to much sun as I was feeling kind of lazy on Saturday. Going from a cold spring and an endless winter to a sudden summer I was not ready yet for a full days work out in the sun. I did get some things done but didn't make much of a dent in the to do list.

Come midday the daughter and two of the granddaughter's came over to get their mother, my wife and go rummage sailing (that is what they call it) I watched with some amusement as they prepared like a well-seasoned combat team. First thing they did was apply sunscreen to their face and arms and legs, I was thinking it looked more like war paint going on. Even Baby M was lathered up with lotion and bonnet tied on her head securely. Grand daughter number two went through the check list. Dimes and nickels in one pocket, quarters in another and a small wallet with a couple of singles in it. I asked to see her poor face and she gave me a pout and said "But Lady, I only have one quarter" I cracked up and gave her some more quarters with instructions to find me some fishing stuff. Two years ago she bought me an aluminum tackle box with some old lures in it for fifty cents. The box is worth fifty dollars and since then I always give her some money to see if she can do it again.

With the ladies gone to hit the rummage sales I was getting ready to run to the Resort and see what is going on. I was just putting my go bag in the Tahoe when my son drove up with his boat on the trailer. My son likes old stuff and a few years ago he bought an old tri-hull which we call the Barge. Over the winter he bought a newer motor, a 1982 Merc fifty horse and this was an upgrade over what he had on the Barge. Well he took it out for a test run and it needed some work so here he was. I looked in his bag of parts and he had spark plugs and a new impeller so we spent a couple of hours installing something that should have taken a half hour. Had to swap out the impeller housing and clean the lower unit and found a prop in the garage that was a perfect fit.

The garage seems to collect motor parts and having one of my son's that turned into a gear head means he needs places to store his Good Stuff. I just happen to be the place where he stores his outboard motor Good Stuff. The old prop had a nice chunk taken out of one of the blades so that will have to go to Dug's to get repaired, someday. Son took the boat and headed to the access to get the boat wet and check out the repairs and I was left standing looking at the Puddle Humper that still has not seen the water yet this season. Calling Duncan to jump up in the Tahoe I just slipped in behind the wheel when the girls arrived back home. I watched as they unload just a few bags of so called goodies and the granddaughter told me she could not fine anything for me but she did spend my money on some books, nothing wrong with that, money well spent here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,949,998}

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Tom7227

I can't open the HSOforum. Taking the long weekend off? I have been out of town and I missed a number of postings. I hope it's a glitch and not the result of you trying out the tobacco.

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Bobby Bass

Tom, funny you should mention smoke....

MEMORIAL DAY HERE at the Resort has been quiet so far, but then it is only a little after eleven in the morning. I finally made it to the Resort on Sunday and as I drove in right away I noticed a few things. First off I saw one of the Fellows, Gary riding a beat up lawn tractor wearing one of the surplus gas masks. At least I think it was Gary it was hard to see with the cloud of smoke that was coming out of the old lawn tractor's muffler. Now I might not have given the sight a second thought but he was actually mowing the Resort grounds. As I came around the bend I saw the second interesting thing and that was a big black stretch limo parked in the front of the Fellows campsite.

I parked the Tahoe alongside the Clubhouse and I let Duncan out and grabbed my bag. I walked up the path to the main entrance and stood for a while on the porch and looked out at the Resort. A lot more trucks and trailers and tents then last years Memorial weekend. As I stood on the deck I took a swat at a mosquito that landed on my arm, another sign that summer is finally here. I made my way into the main room and dropped my bag on the floor, I exchange HIYA's with a couple of people sitting in booth's number two and three and a few more guys were sitting at the counter. I asked if anyone had seen Vic and one of the guys said he had just headed back to the Bait Room.

I started in that direction when Marv came out from behind the swinging double doors to the kitchen wearing a apron with a big red lobster on it. I made a comment on the lobster apron and he told me it was a crayfish, I took a second look and nodded my head in agreement. Vic came out from the Bait Room and we exchanged HIYA's and Vic told me the place has been busy all weekend and we are full up! The bell in the Bait Room jingled and Vic turned to head back and I told him that's OK I got it. Later that evening things quieted down and the sound of Gary and his tractor was gone and I got around to asking Vic about the Limo and the tractor. Vic and I took a stroll and Vic filled me in. Seems the Fellows have bought themselves a limo for one of their new business ideas. They got a good price on the limo and figure they would rent it out for high school graduation parties and weddings. They had a small problem with none of them had a place where they could park it and then the thought about the Resort and our big turn around for the school bus.

Now one of the founding ideas of the Resort was the bartering system so the Fellows came to Vic and said they would mow the grass at the Resort in exchange for parking privileges for the Limo and they would throw in free bug fogging. The fogging got me interested so we went over to the Limo where a couple of the guys were detailing it. From a distance the Limo looked pretty sweet. Long lean and black till ya got up close and saw the black duct tape over the rust spots. As I leaned up against the limo the Fellows floated their business plan for the Limo to me, then they told me about how they had figured away to add bug spray into the carb of their lawn tractor. I nodded my head but was thinking twice about the whole set up till they sweeten the pot with an offer of using the Limo to go down and see the annual baseball game in the big twin cites at Bull's-eye field. The thought of not smelling like a French fry after riding down in Reed's bio-diesel bus sealed the deal and the limo can stay, at least for the summer here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,951,052}

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Bobby Bass

I SPENT MEMORIAL Day at the resort and even though we are a few days past it I wanted to go back and share with you a few thoughts. I know I just wrote a little about how the weather can be extreme here at Lake Iwanttobethere but on Memorial Day it was ninety-two in the shade by mid afternoon. That is to hot for the middle of summer let alone the last week of May. A couple of things stuck out on the holiday to me one of them was that with warmer weather finally here the wife has been hanging clothes out on the clothes line. In my go bag she had put a couple of them big fluffy towels, except when the come off the line they are no longer big and fluffy instead they are more like huge rough luffa's that have been flatten by a steam roller. With the thermometer on the Clubhouse still in the nineties I grabbed one of the stiff towels and headed to the little bay, I had the idea that I was going to wash up down there.

As I made my way down to the lake I started to pick up a few onlookers who fell in behind me. Like any swimming in any body of water no one wants to be the first one in so it appeared that I was going to be the guinea pig. I set my towel on the dock and stepped out of my flip flops and walked around to the side of the dock and the water. I took one step in and was just putting the other foot in when the shock of the cold water reached my brain and I tried to get the first foot out before the second foot had settled to the bottom. Saying the water was cold would have been an understatement. I am just so glad I didn't jump off the end of the dock which is how I usually do it. I got out of the water stepped up on to the dock and tried to dry my feet with the luffa. My first thought was to find a fire!

Now in a round about way I have brought you to where I was heading in today's story, Fire. It being a holiday had no bearing on the need for fire. People were at the Resort and they were camping, so that calls for fire. It was the time of day that campers start making the evening camp fires. Small cooking fires, small bon fires, small fires to keep bugs away, fires to keep the chill away fires for making smores or just plain fires because you want to watch stuff burn. With my feet feeling like bags of ice cubes attached to my legs I set out is search of fire. I found none, at least not right away. Not all the campers are locals it being a holiday they had invited friends and family and it seems a lot of these friends and family watch a lot of TV. They watch a lot of Survivor man and survivor woman and survivor man and woman and survivor buddies and in everyone of those shows they feature a new old way to start a fire.

As I walked or skated from campsite to campsite I would spend just a minute watching someone trying to start a fire from a show they saw on TV. I saw one guy trying to collect belly button fuzz from his family. Another guy was working with a stick and a bow, I was going to tell him a cross bow is not the kind you need for a fire but I kept moving on. The machete and chunk of steel that one guy was hitting trying to make sparks was interesting but I needed fire now. I was wondering to myself does anyone carry matches anymore.. I came up on a guy busy trying to get a signal for his cell phone, he was looking for a fire starting app. Finally I got to the Fellows campsite, if anyone is going to have a fire going it was the Fellows. I mean they have experience with house fires, camper fires, grass fires even a warehouse fire, although to be fair that was never proven. I got to the campsite and their fire ring was cold, they were gathered over by the picnic table and I could see a keg of beer in a wash tub of ice cold lake water and feet were propped up and they were gathered around something or somebody. Dragging my feet I made my way to the group and looking over the top I saw they had a laptop open on the picnic table with a fire dancing on the screen. "What, no fire" and Gary looked at me over the top of his beer and said "Dude its ninety-one degrees out" and so it was here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,955,764}

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Bobby Bass

AM HEARING THAT some fish are being caught here on Lake Iwanttobethere just not by me. As you know I am a bass fishermen and I tend to wait till the water warms up some and the crowds of early fishermen have settled down. Son in law just came back from a fishing trip with his dad and a couple of his buddies and the fishing was slow and the water cold. I never was much of a fan of sitting in a cold metal canoe early in the season. The way the son in law tells it he spend most of his time carrying firewood to feed the fire to keep the old guys warm and of course to portage the canoes.

Back here at the home front I have been busy busy. I don't know what I have been doing but by the end of the day I am tired and I have to write down what I did in order to remind myself that I am getting something done. The goal was to work on the Puddle Humper but I started the day getting dirt and filling up planters for the deck. I mixed three hundred pounds of potting soil, top soil and manure and filled planters and pots till it was all gone. Then I started the tiller and went over about half of the big garden before building another raised bed for carrots. Got that half filled with dirt before my back told me it was enough for the day. I went and sat down on the deck and looked in the direction of the Puddle Humper and thought to myself maybe tomorrow, which is today.

Neighbor Chuck came over, asked me if I was going fishing today, he already knew the answer because he walked right by the Puddle Humper and he could see that I had not yet put the trolling motor on. We sat on the deck and chatted some, he told me of his fishing outing the other day with his wife and then rubbed it in a little that he was out fishing before me. Elmer was home I could hear Sitar music coming out through his open windows of his cabin. I pretty much ignore the sound but Elmer likes to hear it from time to time, says it reminds him of his youth. I hear Chuck's name being called and Chuck looks at me and heads for Elmers, in whispers to me "You didn't see me" a few minutes later his wife appears coming down the path between our two places. She looks at me and I just point in the direction of Elmers.

Pretty quiet around here today compared to yesterday. Yesterday I spent most of the day yelling at the wife and she yelled right back at me. Of course it is not what you think as yesterday they were boring test holes in the road. From eight in the morning till just after five in the evening all you could hear was the sound of clanking and drilling. I went down to the Lodge later in the evening and I looked at where they had been drilling. A damp patch of road about every ten feet in a straight line. I don't know what they were looking for, I don't think the ground changes much. Today it is all quiet out, maybe they made enough noise to fill their quota. So as I was saying I yelled at the wife and she yelled at me because we could not hear each other otherwise. Funny today she does not seem to have a thing to say to me.

I guess it is time to get back to work, was using this time to take a break before going back and filling up the rest of that new raise bed. Need to change oil on the mower and touch up the blade some before I can go and mow this evening. I will at least have the grass cut around the Puddle Humper. Got a baseball game playing on the radio now and it is nice out if you sit in the sun. Dogs are a little restless as they have to keep changing their sleeping spots on the deck as the sun moves. Chuck and his wife just walked through my yard, he gave me a glance and I just threw up my hands like I knew nothing. Elmer is heading for his dock so I better get out of sight. I might have borrowed his last sucker minnow. What! just because the Puddle Humper is not ready to go fishing does not mean I can't drown a sucker minnow under a bobber here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,958,598}

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Bobby Bass

WOKE UP THIS morning to the sound of rain splattering against the window of the bedroom, a good sound, so much better then the sneaky sound of snow. Made my way outside and stood under the short roof that protects the deck door and watched rain fall from the eve into the new rain barrel on the deck. I gave it a shove with my hand and it made a sloshing sound as it was only half full. I looked at the dark sky and I figured I will have no problem with the rain barrel filling up before the end of the day. No garden work today, grass is wet and I am sure if I walk in the garden it will be muddy, besides it is raining out and Sunshine Ray's forecast is calling for it to be wet for the next four days. Guess I will just have to find something else to do and I eye the Puddle Humper sitting dry under the boat house roof.

Yesterday I did get the batteries up from the basement and put them in the boat. Of course it was not that easy as I had to clean them up some and check connectors. First off I figured I would upgrade the software on my graph so I downloaded that and installed it on the graph and started playing around some with it. The graph is only a few years old and I never really sat down and checked out all the bells and whistles on it. Learned just enough about it so I could take it fishing and that was it. Like most things that have software people usually only learn just what they need to know to get the thing to do what they need it to do for them. As I played with the graph I brought out my laptop where I had installed the manual for the graph. You don't get a instruction book anymore instead you get a disk. Kind of hard to read a disk when you are out on the water.

With the laptop open up to the manual I stated playing around with settings and customizing the unit. Found out I could change the icons for my way points that I would mark spots where I caught fish. I went through all my way points and deleted a mess of them and changed the ones left to represent bass and northern catches. Now at a glance on the map I can see not only where I caught bigger fish but what kind of fish I caught, a handy thing to have here on Lake Iwanttobethere. Looking through the manual I tweaked a few things here and there and got myself familiar with the unit again, I mean it has been eight months since I last turned it on.

As I worked on the graph the rain would come and go. A few rolling thunder boomers rolled across the lake but I did not see any flashes of lightning. For awhile there it stopped raining and the sun came out briefly. Steam rose from the deck umbrella and the dogs used the break in the weather to come out of the cabin and run for awhile. At least Duncan did some running, the old dogs Bud and Barney just walked around the lot smelling wet grass and making sure nothing had been moved since the last time they checked. The sky got dark again and rain started to fall, Duncan headed under the Puddle Humper and the old dogs barked at the deck door to be let in. The wife let them in and just ignored me and Duncan standing out in the rain but under the roof of the boat house.

Not much more I can do with the graph on dry land, I need to get the Puddle Humper wet so I can fiddle with the settings. But that more then likely will not happen, by the time I get the boat n the water I will be wanting to go fishing not playing with the graph. With my jacket pulled up over my head to keep some of the rain off I headed for the shop and a date with my fishing rods. I have new line to string and a couple of cigars hidden in a tackle box. Seems to me the rest of the day will be just perfect for putting new line on, smoking a cigar and watching rain fall here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,961,694}

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Bobby Bass

I HEARD SUNSHINE Ray say that here at Lake Iwanttobethere we have not had any rain for ten days. Yesterday we made up for it and more is in the forecast for today and the next two days. The work in the garden has come to a standstill but after dark last night I was outside picking night crawlers. This morning found me heading to the Resort with a cooler filled with crawlers and bedding. Duncan was riding shotgun and the window was down so he could stick his head out and take in all the smells carried in the wind. I drove out the drive and made my way around the orange barrels marking the construction on my road. The water filled potholes hid who knows what beneath them. I eyed the shoulder of the road and made a mental note to stay away from the sides. The mud looked deep and a dozer may not have any problem but me and the Tahoe are getting too old to play in that stuff.

It rained most of the day yesterday and I think a lot of the night. I checked rain barrels this morning and all three of them are full and dripping water. I had the radio tuned to KCUM it being a Sunday morning the station plays nothing but acoustical music till noon. With my window down along with Duncan's we drove down the road to the Resort in no great hurry. Where Duncan's nose was busy my eyes were working for me. I noticed that the maples have finally filled out with leaves and now as I drove down the road the cabins along the lake are blocked from the view of the road with all the new leaves. Ditches are filled with water and the deep green grass is knee deep on a deer, matter of fact I saw a couple of deer just off the side of the road. Heads raised up to watch us drive by and Duncan made that little whining sound when he gets excited.

No one else out on the road and as I drove under the railroad bridge water dripped down to splattered on the windshield and I had to hit the wipers for a couple of sweeps to clear the glass. I turned up the radio in the Tahoe a few notches, a good song on and the Tahoe always has had a good sound system, might as well use it. I made the turn at Elise's shop and then down the road to the Resort turn off. As I drove down our road I noted that the road was in good shape and the rain had not washed anything away. I drove through the camping area at a crawl and turned the radio down too just a whisper. I am sure people were still sleeping as it was kind of early for a Silent Sunday morning.

I parked in my spot and I paused and looked at the quiet camp, Clothes lines hung limp from their poles. A few had an assortment of towels and shorts and a couple of life vests were slung over one of the posts, no doubt someone got caught in the rain. Blue tarps being used as rain fly's hung over the top of tents and the Fellows campsite was quiet but there was a little bit of smoke drifting upwards from their campfire. I got out of the Tahoe and Duncan waiting for the OK sat on my seat till I told him he could get out. He hopped to the ground and his nose went to work as he headed toward the deck of the Clubhouse. I went around to the back of the Tahoe and got the cooler out and made the walk around to the Bait Room entrance. My foot steps were quiet in the wet grass and I stopped to look at our little bay. Vic's boat was tied up to dock number three, right next to his reserved parking sign. Lake was quiet but there was a little fog out on the water.

I made my way to the Bait Room door and Duncan was waiting for me. I open the screen and then the inside door and heard the jingle of the bell over head. I put the crawlers down by the crawler fridge, will pack them up for sale later. I turned to see Marv in his crayfish apron looking at me and he just said "Its you" and I nodded. "Making pancakes, you want any?" I held up three fingers and Marv nodded then turned and headed back to his kitchen. Duncan looked at me then followed his nose and Marv to the kitchen. I made my way into the Main Room and found the Sunday paper already being read by Vic in booth number one. He had already been out to the mailbox to retrieve the paper so he gets first reads of it. I poured myself a glass of orange juice and made my way to the booth, I sat down and Vic looked over the top of the paper to give me a HIYA and I gave him a nod back. No answer from me, it is after all Silent Sunday here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,963,822}

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Bobby Bass

RAIN BARRELS ARE full here at the Resort today. As I sit with the laptop in booth number one some sunshine is coming in through the window. I have to adjust the screen to get out of the glare. Just in from tilling the big garden here at least a good part of it. The ground was rock hard just a few days ago and now with all the rain it has soften up enough that I need but make a single pass with the tiller. I had to stop because my boots were getting so covered in the heavy wet dirt but not quite mud that I needed a break and it was lunch time. Even as I write this I can see dark clouds rolling in from the South so I may not be doing any more tilling today. A good reason to stop as it was almost becoming like work. We all know what we think about work here at Lake Iwanttobethere. Hard work has never killed anyone, by why risk it?

As I sit in the booth I can see a few boats out in our little bay, Vic and Dock Burriem are out fishing crappies in Vic's boat. The two of them have found a spot where the crappies are cooperating and a few dinners have made it to the pan from the area. I don't think they need to catch any fish to have a reason to go out and spend time in the boat. Old Dock there has about a thousand and one stories to tell and Vic has a short memory so even the repeated ones are new to him. Vic is a new man and a busy one at that. He gets up at the crack of eight o'clock and eats breakfast. He then takes his boat out to the point that juts into the main lake and picks up the paper and mail that is delivered by boat to the mailbox there.

He usually trolls back to the dock and brings the mail in. Has a couple of cups of coffee and reads the paper before going into the Bait Room to work for awhile. By mid afternoon he is back in the boat fishing just off shore for some sunnies. Not to long he stays out there just long enough to be away from the docks when campers want to launch their rental boats. By late afternoon he is back at the Clubhouse and he usually gets a nap in. When supper comes he is in the kitchen helping Marv out and then back to the boat for the evening bite. This rain of the last few days does have his schedule screwed up some. With Elmer and Marv in one boat Vic and Dock have teamed up in another for a friendly fishing contest. We have a chalk board up in the Bait Room with the current standings.

We have found a place to park the black limo of the Fellows, made a spot up by the wood shop and Chuck using the tractor moved some class five up there to level off a spot. Since all the Fellows went in on buying the Limo I was wondering how they were going to all share it. After the first few days they stopped driving it all over as the gas mileage is not that great. Gary who works part time delivering pizza for Del's Pizza and Sub Shop thought it would be fun to make delivers in it one night instead of using his old Yugo. He said he lost money as no one gave him any tips, people figured if he could drive a Limo he was doing pretty good.

Need to get the garden done up here as the window sills are filled with tomato and pepper plants. Vic has gotten to selling some of the plants as when people ask he can't refuse a good offer. Matter of fact he is talking about maybe having a tomato plant stand like those kids in town do. Just off Birch Avenue there are some kids with a sign that says Lemonade on one side and Tomato Plants on the other. Like most business ventures here at Lake Iwanttobethere you have to do more then one thing under the same roof. Last year we were talking about a greenhouse up here and now Vic is bring it back up. Maybe we can find some county money or a grant or something. Would be nice to have about right now as I see some rain drops are hitting the glass and Vic is heading to his dock here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,967,209}

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Bobby Bass

PRIORITY ONE AT the Resort today was to replace some screen panels on the enclosed porch before the mosquitoes could make another assault. Yesterday I was hard at work, I had the tiller in the Dodge and was making the rounds getting the daughter and son's gardens tilled along with a few paying customers. I was on the way home but had stopped at the Resort for a refreshing cool beverage of my choice when I noticed how crowded the Main room of the Clubhouse was. At first I thought Vic had started a Happy Hour but I found out quickly that everyone was taking refuge from an onslaught of mosquitoes. No one was using the screen in porch as the skeetters had breached the screen and were now massing on the screen door waiting for some one to open it and give them a way inside.

The Fellows were a day late on mowing the grounds and with the old garden tractor doing double duty as a fogger the skeetters had found an opening. When I came in Vic was on the phone with Gary telling him of the problem and Gary told him he would be right over to clear out the porch. Marv was in the Bait Room and he came out to tell me he sold the last can of skeetter spray and maybe I better put a rush on the next order. I made a note of it, I have it around here somewhere.

So today I came over early and we had to go into to see Big Earl at the General Store. We did have some screen at the Resort it was marked down in our inventory but when we went to unroll it, it crumbled in our hands. Guess the screens have not been replaced for a long time and last year we just did some small patch jobs. After what Gary did to get rid of the skeetters last night we find ourselves needing to replace all the screen in the porch. I struck up a deal with Big Earl for a weeks worth of camping and I walked out with a armload of new screen, staples and spline.

I was just getting into the Tahoe when I was blocked in by Mindy and Mandy in their delivery truck. The girls have been busy as I have seen the truck around town and when we pass I wave and they wave back. They were making a delivery and had me blocked in but I didn't mind waiting, the view was pretty good. While Mandy wheeled in a couple of cases of Lake Iwanttobethere Root Beer into the General Store Mindy came over and leaned on my driver's door. She asked when am I going to invite them out to the Resort and I told them they are of course welcomed anytime. Mindy them told me that Elsie was cutting back on her order of Root beer and wanted to know if I wanted to pick up the slack, the Resort that is. Told her I would welcome selling the Lake Iwanttobethere brand as I know there is a waiting list. Mindy then said it is a done deal and leaned into the Tahoe to give me a kiss on the cheek, just the way the girls do business.

Back at the Resort we tore down what was left of the tattered screen and replace a few boards that had been damaged. New screen went up and after a few hours we were daring a skeetter to try and get through. Of course by this time the Fellows were out mowing and you could tell where they were by the cloud of smoke and birds fleeing the area. With the warm weather we have been having and the abundance of rain fall there are plenty of places for the skeetters to breed. Ditches are full of water and just the other day Hammering Hank and Skinny had to raise the docks up a few inches, there is that much water in the lake. I am sitting in the screened in porch as I write this, a cold beverage of my choice on a coaster and a fly swatter just in case. Now you might be wondering why we had to do all the replacing of screen? Well that is because Gary came into the porch last night with a lighter and a can of hair spray, Makes one big flame thrower and it sure did clean the skeetters out while burning up some screen, here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,970,926}

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Bobby Bass

BLASTING ZONE AHEAD, I drove out the drive of the cabin this morning to find a new sign just down from Elmers driveway. Blasting zone ahead and I am tying to figure just what they are going to be blasting. The sign which you had to stop to read said something about short audio tones and then long tones and all clear tones, I was thinking this should be interesting for the wife who is tone deaf. Anyway I drove into town and to the General store for a spade, seems I somehow lost mine when I was out tilling the other day. Either it fell out of the Dodge or I hit a bump and I donated the shovel to a county work crew, either way it was gone and I needed another. I found Big Earl standing at the front of his store with a couple of other guys all holding white Styrofoam cups with coffee. Nice enough day outside and the guys were out on the sidewalk instead of inside around a cold stove.

Exchanged HIYA's and I made my way into the store and back to the wall racks where shovels are hung. Had my choice of several different kinds but I picked one with a rubber covered handle, easier for the wife to use. Made my purchase and as I made my way out past Barb the cashier, she asked me if I made it over to Detour City yesterday and I told her I did. Yesterday it was supposed to rain all day but the morning started of cloudy but decent. I got the last of my garden tilled and I mowed the property. Still no rain so I decided to work on a walk behind mower that the son brought over. It needed a do hickey that I didn't have and Big Earl said he was out of stock of them. His brother in law who owns a store in the next town over said he might have one to two of them and so I drove over there.

It was pretty good timing as no sooner did I get off the phone with Big Earl and headed to the Tahoe then the rain started to fall. There are other towns scattered around out here but Lake Iwanttobethere is a tad bigger then most. Just down the road a fair piece is a place we call Detour City to be honest I don't know its real name. I rarely go that way and it might be because every time I ever go to that place you have to take several detours to get to where ever you want to go. They have detours for the detours and I swear every orange barrel that we store over the winter at Lake Iwanttobethere ends up on a street over in Detour City. What I usually do when I go over there is I put on my blaze orange hunting vest and my old white hard hat. Since I have a white Tahoe I hold my cell phone to my ear and just drive around the barricades looking like I am some big shot county employee. It helps getting me to Big Earls brothers store but I am still lost half the time I am there.

Back at the cabin with a new shovel I walked over to the big garden. I have a lot of the garden put in but I still need to put tatters in the ground and finish transplanting stuff from the greenhouse. Not worried about the planting as everything is growing big in the greenhouse. Granddaughter number two told me I can't plant tatters until she comes over tonight so I have been saving that job for her. I am finally on schedule otherwise. All my tilling is done, grass is cut planting will be done and I can go fishing. Matter of fact I think the garden might be a little to wet this morning to walk in so I am going to spend the day working on the Puddle Humper. I know that Elmer bought some suckers and they are floating in his bucket off the end of his dock. I also know that he has a key lock on his sucker bucket but I also know were he hid the key. I might just borrow a sucker and stick it under a float. Should be a good day to do some dock fishing while I sort through tackle boxes and stow gear on the Puddle Humper here at Lake Iwanttobethere {1,975,316}

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Bobby Bass

THIS MORNING AT the Lodge finds more then a few buddies sitting at tables playing cribbage and looking out over the fog covered waters of Lake Iwanttobethere. Even with the Women Auxiliary meeting in the small meeting room guys have been trickling into the Lodge this morning. Just like me I didn't have much of anything better to do as the morning has been a wash out. Over night heavy rain fell and even though it stopped an hour ago there is still a little drizzle and some thick fog. I didn't get to planting my garden last night as the grand daughter did come over but she was late. Instead we started a fire in the pit and spent time slapping mosquitoes and searching for satellites in the dark sky over head. We actually did pretty good finding two satellites and we shared seeing a shooting star together.

This morning the grand daughter went rummage sailing with her grand mother and I decided to come to the Lodge and just kill some time. Am actually looking to pick up some fishing hot spots chatter but no one is talking this morning. Fishing has been slow and just when we seem to get some stable weather it all falls apart and we get thunderstorms. The one common thread I have been hearing is that it is a banner year for skeeters and there are a lot of frogs. Should be a real good frog bite come this fall and I am already looking forward to that. Yesterday I did put the muffs on the Puddle Humper and started the outboard, ran just fine and I changed plugs and greased it up. Still have to vacuum the carpet and put tackle boxes in but I should be ready to get her wet here as soon as it dries out. Always seems to take me a long time to get the Puddle Humper wet for the first time but after that I don't need much of a reason to go fishing.

I did find out more about that Blasting signs on my road, yesterday when I was working on the Puddle Humper a white Tahoe came rolling up the drive and a gal got out wearing a white hard hat and a blaze yellow and orange vest on. I was thinking I was busted from my trip into Detour City but the gal had a flyer in her hand and a smile when she walked over to the boat. I asked her what she was going to turn off and she just told me nothing but they are going to start blowing things up! The short story is they found some rock under the old roadway and it is in the way so they are going to have to do some blasting to clear the way. They can only do small multiple blasts and it looks like it may last deep into summer. I asked why don't they just blow it all at once and she told me they wanted to but one of my neighbors down the road has a valuable tea cup and plate collection that she does not want disturbed.

I knew right away who it was, Dorris the head of the Ladies Auxiliary. Her fine collection of tea cups she was worried about she got from down at the Gas-N-Go back in the sixties. When you bought ten gallons of gas back then you got a punch in a card that when filled you could trade it in for stuff out of a glass display case that they had on one of the pump islands. I remember the case as my older brother traded in his cards for some hunting knifes. Of course you would never find a case with weapons in it nowadays at a gas station, even here at Lake Iwanttobethere.

Shortly after she left Chuck came over from his place and asked if I had met up with the blasting lady. I told him I did and that is when I noticed a little smile on his face. Chuck looked around like he was seeing if anyone could hear him and then said "You know those big stumps out back? I think we just found the perfect time to blow them babies up and no one will be the wiser, here at Lake Iwanttobethere" {1.976.996}

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Bobby Bass

SILENT SUNDAY HERE at the Resort but it does not have to be a silent Sunday to just sit back and enjoy a sunrise here at Lake Iwanttobethere. I spent the night in my room here at the Clubhouse and I was woke up by sunshine pouring through my window and the tapping of the blinds from a soft breeze that was blowing. I made my way down the stairs being quiet like not wanting to wake anyone else up. The main room was only lit by the sunshine coming through the windows but it was more than enough light to make my way to the kitchen and a waiting tumbler that I was going to fill with orange juice. I could smell coffee and a pot was on and already half gone, either that or it was left from last night. I poured juice into the tumbler and headed for the screen in porch where I found Marv and Elmer sitting along with Vic

It being a Silent Sunday we all exchanged nods and I grinned some to myself. No one spoke and I am thinking my silent Sunday routine is catching on. Of course it was not all that silent, there was the sound of Vic slurping some tea he had made and in the quiet the sound of the Sunday paper being read was actually loud. There was a robin close by and it was singing and you could hear the answer of another robin not too far away. A chirp of a chipmunk caught Vic's eye and he looked over the top of his glasses and the top of the outdoor living section he was reading trying to put his eyes on the chipmunk outside of the screened in porch.

I made my way over to an empty chair that was alongside of Elmer. He reached over and picked up the comics from it and I sat down. Elmer gave me the once over before shaking out his paper and went back to reading the obituaries. I eyed the comics but decided I was not ready to read anything just yet. Instead I leaned back in my chair and closed my eyes, cradling the tumbler of orange juice in my hands. I could feel some sunshine trying to work its way under my eyelids but I kept them closed. Using just my ears I went around the screened in porch placing Elmer and Marv and the suddenly quiet Vic. A long time ago Elmer took me under his wing and taught me how to listen, I in turn practice with my kids but not so much anymore, they always seem to be to busy to just stop and listen. Grand kids seem to have much more time to do it and with them I practice honing my listening skills.

I can hear the robins, the chipmunk is still chirping and he seems to be getting closer. Matter of fact I would say that he must almost be where Vic has his bird feeder which would account for Vic being quiet, he is watching his feeder. There is just a tad of a breeze out and now that we have leaves on trees you can hear the leaves rubbing against the roof of the screen house. I think I have that on the to do list, trimming the branches back some. A camper is stirring I just heard the sound of a zipper being undone on a tent and someone is fishing in our little bay. I know this because I heard the echo of an oar bouncing off the side of one of the resorts rental aluminum boats. Cawing of a crow and a distant dog bark, can't tell if it is a big dog or a little dog or what kind of dog it is, I am not that good but Elmer would tell you if you asked him.

Secret to listening is to not strain to hear something but to just let the sounds come to you. After a while you will learn to sort out or filter what you have already heard leaving room to hear something new. As I sit in the chair I no longer hear Elmer reading to himself, or Marv licking his fingers every time he turns a page. Vic is back to rocking in his chair and I don't hear the chirping chipmunk. I mean I really don't hear the chipmunk, he must have left so Vic's bird feeder is safe and he goes back to rocking. What I do hear is the sound of a mosquito and it is close and then that to goes quiet, till I feel a poke on my neck and the sound of my slap is loud here in the screen porch at the Resort here on the shore of Lake Iwanttobethere {1,979,310}

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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • BrianF
      Due to all the the weeds, I’ve heard the name ‘Garbage Bay’ given to the bay just West of Niles Point - which bay actually has a name, Laura Bay - but I’ve not heard of Garbage Point.  Maybe it’s associated with Garbage Bay?  Dunno for sure...
    • Skibo
      Skunked - I've always been Lowrance.  A friend suggested buying one smaller Humminbird to connect to the Minnkota.  I did just that with a 9" and have since upgraded to a 12", and have been very happy with the setup.  I prefer the Lowrance/Navionics for navigation, and the Humminbird with their Side Imaging for fishing.
    • SkunkedAgain
      That's a beautiful part of the lake. Great pictures.   Forgive my ignorance as this is more of a map question. Is "Garbage Point" right next to Niles Point? I've heard the name over the years and believe that it is right around there on the north side.
    • SkunkedAgain
      I don't remember what kind of survey they did in the fall, but whatever it was showed very favorable walleye populations on Vermilion.   I did a quick search, and they were netted not shocked out of the water:  http://timberjay.com/stories/walleye-boom-time,17521
    • DonkeyHodey
      You got it, bro!   The secret spot is not so secret...    Usually the beach is empty in April but it wasn't this past weekend (we planned to try Sun before lunch and there was no room, so we took early lunch, came back and thankfully then the prime beach spot was open!  YES!)   The high water is one thing;  there's at least enough standing room and I could barely fit a folding chair.  (but action was hot--we weren't sitting much at all!) The bigger issue was casting room.  80% of the time I spent fishing and 20% untangling line from the brush/trees.  🤣
    • BrianF
      East end of Waconda Bay.  Our dock points N towards Niles Point, which you can see in the background there.  Been eight years now since we bought; every year better than the last.   
    • gunner55
      Still there today, 2 boats in the water along with at least 2 vehicles. Usually they're done in 2-3 days so I'm not sure if the weather delayed them or if since it didn't happen last season they are taking more.
    • Sorgy
      Nice view, Where on the lake is that?
    • FishinCT
      I assume they also didn’t do the fall electrofishing survey to assess young of the year walleye?
    • Rick G
      Nice job @DonkeyHodey   The old "secret" spot produces again😏  Hard time finding a place to stand with the high water?  
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