Last week I had just retrieved my nine inch Rebel plug with its three sets of treble hooks from a large stump in Smith’s lake. Now, I was on my quest to catch that trophy large mouth bass.
Being careful not to spook the fish, my friend and I rowed over to the opposite side of the lake. There just happened to be some rather large Willow trees lining the bank on the other side of the lake and their branches were hanging over the lake. It didn’t take long to catch several eight-pounders, but like I said, “I wanted a wall hanger.”
I started throwing that Rebel plug as far as I could to cover more water. The last time I threw that plug it went about 200 yards and be dog gone ef’en it didn’t land in the top of one of them old willow trees. Well I got to pulling on that plug so the whole tree was shaking and out flew two turkeys, a hive of bees and ten water moccasins fell into the water. One of them snakes was about six foot long and before he could swim back to the bank, a 35-pound bass done jumped up and swallowed that rascal.
Now I just knew that was the bass I wanted on my wall. I gave a big yank on that line to get my plug out of the top of that willow tree. Finally the plug came loose and was flying through the air right toward our boat. It just so happened one of them turkeys was still flying around and thought that plug was a bug and swooped down to get it. I be John Brown ef’n them three nine inch treble hooks didn’t hang that Ol’ turkey by his beard. Why that plug and that turkey came crashing head first right into our 12 foot V-bottom boat and flipped us over. I don’t rightly know if both my friend and I were Baptists when we went under, but when we came up out of the water we had been fully immersed, don’t you know!
After flopping around in the water awhile, we saw that our tackle boxes, life jackets and that Ol’ dead turkey was still floating there in the water. Why we just pulled the boat ashore, emptied out the water, loaded all our equipment we could find and stuffed that Ol’ turkey under them life jackets cause turkey season won’t in, don’t you know. Well then we started out into the river.
Like I said last week, to get into Smith’s lake from the river you had to go through this small passageway which had a log lying across it. Bout time we got to the passage way, I be dog gone ef’n the game warden won’t sitting in his boat right up under that log. Well there won’t no other way around him so we just stopped the boat.
“You boys caught anything?” said the warden.
“No sir, nothing we could talk about,” we said.
“Well let me see them fishing license,” said the warden.
We handed him our licenses, hoping he hadn’t spotted that turkey in the boat. You know a law enforcement officer has got to have pretty good eyesight and he spotted that turkey up under them life jackets.
“Ya’ll boys know turkey season just went out, and I’m going to have to issue both of you a ticket,” said the warden.
He pulled out his little ticket book, licked his pencil and started writing. Bout that time, the same bobcat we talked about last week, the one with all them fleas, appeared on that log right above that warden’s head. When that bobcat growled, why I’ve never seen anybody move so fast in my life. He had that boat motor cranked in a split second, and the last thing we seen of that game warden was his new hat flying off as he sped off up the river.
J.A. Bolton is a Richmond County resident and a member of the Story Spinners Guild, which meets in Laurinburg.