Missed Opportunity

Here’s a tip for all of you who write stories – double check the submission requirements!

I finished my entry for the  NewScientist.com flash fiction contest and found the “This contest is closed for submissions” page when I went to send them my latest masterpiece.  It turns out that I misread the closing time in the rules.

As I promised in an earlier post, here is my entry.

GONE FISHING

“There’s no fish, Grandpa. Probably hasn’t been any here since before I was born.”

“Hush up and watch your line.”

“Who’s going to hear us?  We’re floating in the middle of the Pacific with not another soul around.”

They sat in silence for a while, watching the brightly colored bobbers dance along in the wake of their converted deep sea cruiser. The water this close to the processing platforms was deep blue and free from the debris that choked most of the ocean’s currents.

“Can we head back soon? I’m supposed to meet up with Terry and the others online at 3…” He started pulling his fishing line in.

“Patience, young man. A little time out here with me won’t kill you.”  The old man dug around in the cooler at his side.  “Sandwich?”

“Sure.” The young man unwrapped it and took a bite, dangling the pole off of one leg.

“Your Grandma used to make me sandwiches just like these for my lunch.  Those days, of course, the garbage in the water was so thick you could just about walk across it from one boat in the recycling fleet to another. There was lots of work to be done cleaning up the mess, but I always found time to toss the ol’ pole in the water.”

The old man looked out at his bobber and tightened his line a bit with the oversized reel. “There was good money in recycling,” he reflected. “Not like these days.”

“Dad says he’s thinking about making the switch to algae farming next season, you know, follow the money and all that.”

“What do you think?”

“Who cares? As soon as I’m done with school, I’m gone… hey, did you see that?”

He pointed toward the water where one of the bobbers dipped below the surface and popped back up.  “Oh, jeez!  What do I do, Grandpa?”

The old man smiled and set down his pole to help the excited youth.  After years of patience, his wait was over.


Leave a comment and let me know what you think.

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