Friday, July 9, 2010

Fishing for camels....

I have planned to do a post about fishing for camels for well over a year now...I wanted to take pictures to go along with it but have not seen any camel holes to even attempt it. So, I thought I would show you one of the scenes where fishing for camels took place....hours and hours of it over the years...this is the elementary school I attended for 8 years.

When we were in grade school, we always seemed to all do things in spurts...we might play basketball every day for a month, or softball, or playing hide and seek, and other things. And then there was fishing for camels...

A camel in this case is a grub much like some of those pictured here...if you are at all squeamish, you might not like to look at these. I always thought the ones we caught were skinnier and had more of an actual hump...but maybe I am remembering wrong. I do know they had that brown head.

Anyway, I don't know who would start it, but fishing for camels would come to be the thing to do at recess. Someone would ask what somebody else was going to do and the answer would be Fish for Camels...and suddenly we would all be fishing for camels. We always hunted for a stem of grass....the part that holds the seed...minus the seed was a favorite. And I think we preferred them dry.

Of course it being a school yard and trampled daily by kids playing, there were lots of bare spots of ground. We looked for holes about a quarter inch in diameter. Getting down on our hands and knees, poking the straw down in the hole 6 or 8 inches till it stops and then wait. In short order it would start to move grab that straw and jerk and you feel this very slight resistance...and out plops a camel. A grub in other words.

I guess the straw invaded its home and it is holding on to it trying to push it out...that is when we would see the stem/straw move and that is when we would grab it and jerk it out of the hole, bringing the camel/grub with it.

I know I often caught more than one but don't really recall how many. And we didn't do anything with them...though I think they were good fishing bait. I think we just left them laying when the bell rang to call us in from recess.

But I can see us all now, plain as day. Kids hunkered down all over the school yard a couple kids here, three more there, another over there...hands at the ready to grab that straw and catch a camel. Sometimes, I think kids just do not know what real fun is any more.

When I started to do this post, I wondered if any other soul had heard of this or if it was just something done in our I googled the exact term 'fishing for camels' and found this little story. He mentions doing it in the spring, but I don't recall it only being in the spring...but I could be wrong.