Published December 10, 2023

Pleasant Pleasures 

Written by
Kim Fundingsland
| The Dakotan
A morning view from a home in the Florida Keys. (Photo: Kim Fundingsland/The Dakotan)
A morning view from a home in the Florida Keys. (Photo: Kim Fundingsland/The Dakotan)

A Slice of Life 

Politics. Scandals. Wars. Protests.  

Sometimes it is hard to slow down and appreciate life, to enjoy the real pleasures of life rather than get caught up in clashes of every sort. 

Do this. Do that. Beware. Believe this. Believe that. Fact check. 

It makes it hard to clear the senses and get away from it all, to enjoy the simple pleasures of life. But it’s necessary. Just do it. We’re all better for looking to the heavens, finding a quiet moment, enjoying time away from hustle and bustle and conflict.  

Take a dog for a walk. Hug children and grandkids. Make a special meal. Volunteer a few hours of your time. Appreciate your surroundings. Give thanks. 

I opened a chocolate recently and there was an almost hidden message inside the wrapper -- “Buy the ticket.” Huh? 

Homes along a canal in the Florida Keys. (Photo: Kim Fundingsland/The Dakotan)

The message meant to stop delaying and procrastinating and just do it. I thought about that for a few minutes, knowing that this North Dakotan had a fishing trip to Florida coming up in a few days. Interesting. 

Regular readers know I have a passion for fishing that has taken me from the wilderness of northern Saskatchewan to the Florida Keys. While fishing has taken me to many new places in pursuit of a variety of fish, each requiring their own methods of catch, it would be easy to get so completely wrapped up in the quest that little to nothing else mattered. 

I’m quite certain I’ve made that mistake. I’m also certain I’ve corrected it. No, I haven’t lost my passion for wetting a line, but I recognize a growing appreciation for fishing friends and destinations, near and far. Big smiles have come to be just as good, even better, than big fish.  

Christmas decorations in Florida. (Photo: Kim Fundingsland/The Dakotan)

Whether we realize it or not, we all need an occasional break from our daily lives that have been infused with today’s deluge of social media and instant news where tragedy grabs headlines. Fishing has become one of my necessary ways to keep life in perspective. Every moment has meaning far beyond lure selection and wind direction. 

Wonderment abounds. Look for it. Find it. It can be in the form of a sunrise or sunset, a rainbow or cloud formation. Maybe the sound of light rain or a gentle breeze. Conversation with an old friend or new acquaintance. 

Every person should find their own way or ways to hit “refresh”. Find a hobby. Go for a walk. Attend a sporting event. Get outdoors. Buy the ticket. 

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