Chuck Terrill: Thinking about trout

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

My oldest son lives in Memphis, Tenn.

Chris wanted to do something memorable with his family. His two elementary-aged girls had never been fishing, so they drove to Cotter, Ark., to fish for trout on the White River.


They spent Sunday fishing. The river was scenic. The weather was beautiful. They caught five trout. Keena said they would have caught more, but Chris didn’t get to fish. He was too busy helping the girls fish. That night, they stayed in a cabin with their fish in the freezer. It had been a nice weekend.

On Monday, they headed for home. They hadn’t driven far when the air conditioner quit working. A few minutes after that, the Buick overheated, and the dash lights were flashing red. Chris looked under the hood and didn’t see anything that was amiss. He called me.

“The only way the A/C and the water temperature are connected is by a serpentine belt,” I said. “Check it and see if it is broken or is slipping. Usually, though, if it is the belt, it will need to be replaced.”

He called me back. It was the serpentine belt. The problem was that it happened to be a Monday holiday. Nothing was open. He was in a very small Arkansas town and had to be back in his office on Tuesday morning. They drove a ways and then sat and let the car cool back down. At fifteen miles an hour in fifteen minutes spurts, you don’t make very good progress.

They used their cell phone to discover that Uber was non-existent where they were. They couldn’t find any car rental places. No Auto repair shops or automotive supply stores were open. Finally, they pulled into a Used Automobile Lot. The owner’s house was next door, and he came out. In about an hour and a half, Chris and Keena negotiated a deal on a different car.

They transferred all of their stuff into the newer vehicle and drove home. Later that evening, I called him to find out how they were doing.

“What cha doin’?” I asked him.

“I’m cooking trout for supper,” he said.

“Oh! I’ll bet fresh trout are really good!” I said.

“He replied, “They better be. They cost me $2,500 each!"

“But remember, you made some great memories your daughters,” I laughed.

Chris and his family drove back to Arkansas a few days later. Their Buick was fixed. Their car broke down on Memorial Day, 2018. He is still trying to sell the 2009 Chevrolet HHR he bought. If you need a used car, let me know.

By now, he might be willing to trade it for trout.

Chuck Terrill, who has doctorates from Master Theological Seminary and Trinity Seminary, is the senior minister at First Christian Church in Cassville. He may be reached at 471-847-2460.