On Sunday I took Bandon the Bashful out for a Valentines Day event I knew she would appreciate more than say, a rawhide dipped in chocolate. We went to the local river establishment. A cheap venue, close to home, no-frills sort of date. She’s a dog, she’s easy to please.
I went to a new section of the river I’d never practised my casting on: a zone of water that I’m now torn over. In one regard, it’s a great stretch of water that provided a few nooks and crannies, seams and pools that I normally gravitate to. On the other hand, this stretch of river ended up (snuggling too close for comfort) right next to the walking path that partners with my local river for miles and miles.
Try as I might, I couldn’t ignore the fact that my choice of river locations for the day landed me square in the middle of lovers lane for Valentine walkers. Who would have thought every couple in my town would think a nice cold stroll along the river would emulate romanticism.
To me, fly fishing is a solitary act. An individual state of being wherein the practitioner goes to their happy place of mind and body. It’s like a Zen Fly Fishing Master whispers in my ear…..shhh…connect, be one with the river….
But on Lovers Lane Sunday, the Zen Master voice turned into a Cage Fight Announcer and chanted in my ear…..you have an audience! Catch a damn fish, these people are staring, waiting, cheering, watching, give ‘em a show!…..I realized I had waded myself into a spectator event and I was center stage. I admit it, I suffered from various degrees of stage fright. ( At one point I slowly turned around and counted 8 people stopped and watching me, I lost my happy place)
Not only did I have a constant stream of witnesses at my back, I had to submit my poor little flies for inspection several times. I guess if you have enough guys walking their ladies along the river, you’re bound to have a few fly fisherman sprinkled in the mix. Showing my flies in this manner always feels like a slim line between a Miss Fly America contest and the criminal line up at a police department. It’s either beauty approved or the guilty fly that belongs back in lock up…err,,,fly box. Thankfully my choice of flies got several nods of approval and no one said, “Umm, that fly only catches fish in Alabama.”
About the actual fish. I don’t wanna talk about them..(the dirty rotten)….
The best thing to interrupt my happy place all day was confessionals from two–not one–but two other fly fisherman. They both confessed they had been skunked. It’s not JUST ME!! Praise the fish gawds ~
Isn’t it time for some fluffy caddis? Perhaps a big juicy salmon fly? Soon maybe? Like tomorrow? I’ve had about all the midge fun I can take…..
Public Service Announcement: A Fly Giveaway! In honor of the big red heart day we just had, Austin from 365 Fly Fish is giving away a dozen #18 Red Hot Nymphs by Feb. 19th. OR by the 30th comment on his blog. All you have to do is leave a comment….so get on over there, cast your comment and you just might score some new flies~ LINK ~~> Red Hot Nymphs Ohh lala spreadin’ the love