OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) - After 24 years of raising two kids, sending them to college, and then hosting two weddings for the girls, it was time to settle down and do something for ourselves.
My wife, Lila, and I talked about what to do, maybe buy a boat. It's been years since we had one. Those who know me might call me cheap; I call it frugal. A boat costs a lot of money.
So it was decided; actually, Lila decided we would get a boat. Discussion over. So much for frugality. We got a 20 foot center console open fisherman. Big enough to go offshore to the barrier islands, but small enough to cruise the bays and bayous, and it has been wonderful.
Back to the people who know me. They say I am a Type-A personality X 10. If I'm not moving, I'm not happy. I'm like the Energizer Bunny on steroids. But look at me now. We have been out to Horn Island several times, and guess what I did? Absolutely NOTHING.
Sat on the beach, swam, did some fishing, walked along the shore. I had found peace and serenity. I even have a cast net to try and catch some bait. It took some practice to get the throwing part of it down. You see, you hold part of the net in your mouth when you throw it out over the water. The first time, I nearly ripped my teeth out. Didn't take me long to figure out how to do it after that first toss.
I have taken several friends and family members out, as well. My longtime friend and boss, WLOX General Manager Dave Vincent went with me once. He looked at me for the better part of a half hour in stunned silence. Here was Doug, doing absolutely NOTHING. Dave couldn't believe it. Neither could I.
But the beauty of that island, the calming influence it has on me is just what the doctor ordered for this Type-A kind of guy. The rolling surf, the birds, dolphins swimming just offshore. It's a scene that can hardly be described in writing.
I hope to make many more trips because it is definitely good for the soul.