Monday, April 21, 2008

Saved! All That's Left Of The Lighthouse

I'd gone down to Hopkins-Carter Marine to meet Parks Masterson for lunch. I hadn't seen or heard from Parks in about thirty-five years, since back when he worked at the now long defunct Browne's Photo Supply where I was a regular customer. It seems that Parks had been playing the "I have insomnia. Let's see how many people out of the past I can locate with a Google search" game. He sent me an email.

It seems that he'd finally done the inevitable and gone into his family's marine supply business, Hopkins-Carter Marine. After a drive to an old section of Miami where streets went every which way around the meandering course of the Miami River I finally found the place. I got the grand tour and we had lunch. We exchanged the usual information about who we still knew from the old days and what they were up to. We talked about our own experiences and adventures, the women in our lives, the kids who didn't yet exist nearly four decades ago and were now middle age, the grandchildren they'd given us. We chatted about fishing and made vague plans to do some fishing together. He wanted to check out the bucktail jigs I make and I gave him an assortment to try out.

I asked him about the collection of old marine memorabilia that served as store decorations at Hopkins-Carter. Parks told me that when we got back to the store he had something special that he wanted to show me. Out back in a huge crate he had what was left of a fresnel lens that had once projected the light beam from an old light house. If you don't know what a fresnel lens is go here:

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