Lost in the Great Outdoors

~Short Version of Lost~

When I wrote my first Lost Ad for the local Newspaper about my wayward waders, it went something like this:

LOST in the Great Outdoors and I’m still crying like a baby. Please help me find my sweet Blue and Gray Backpack that is cradling inside a precious pair of new Patagonia waders that I saved 5 years worth of pennies I found in grocery store parking lots to purchase. Only worn once, but I assure you –we bonded — Backpack is probably laying on the side of the highway between Loman, Idaho City and Kuna where we dropped off a friend. Backpack and waders are probably scared, lonely, possibly injured and wondering where in the hell I am. Please help! Sincerely and desperately, Rebecca Anne 208-***-****

However, when I clicked pay, the total amount for the ad cost more than the waders, so I modified it down to what you see in the picture above. The 4 line economy version. Then I waited. And I prayed to the Fly Fishing Gods. I might of pledged a few things to the underworld (like my soul) for a safe return, but by this last weekend I started to give up hope. That is until late Sunday afternoon when I came off the river from Salmon fishing and saw a missed unknown number on my phone. Insta-Hope as I called my voicemail.

My backpack and waders were found by a man with a heart of gold. You should all know that Kenny rocks and I’m not talking about the one who has the “G” in his name. I wanted to ditch Salmon fishing instantly to go retrieve my goods, but sadly my fishing party didn’t feel the same motivation I did and I had to wait until I got home late Monday night to make a mad dash to Kenny’s house. I tell ya, the reunion was euphoria and elation, a truly emotional moment — on my part that is—Kenny might have thought I was a bit nutso, but I didn’t care. I hugged my backpack that’s sporting a new badge of courage, black tire tracks. The waders inside looked perfect, not even a broken buckle and I have to mention, they were so happy to see me. Thank you Kenny!!!

You all may not of noticed. But the world is now spinning on its axis correctly once again. Carry on……

Now, BigerrFish asked in his comment on my –Kill me now, I lost my waders entry
What have you all………. Found? is the glass half empty or full……”

Now that my mind is no longer an empty water glass, I can answer that question. Beyond a 20 dollar bill I found once, my ‘found’ stories are a flatline. Nothing cool enough to even mention. Maybe it’s me, but it seems I’m destined to always find 1 single shoe on the side of the river. A shoe, just one.

So now that I’ve gone from misery to FOUND status, I can hear the found stories without a sniffle. Surely others out there can do better than a 20 dollar bill or a single shoe? What have you come across out there in the great outdoors? Did you find it’s owner or end up keeping it?

Rebecca aka, Official Water Swatter with proper waders again!!!

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I’ve wrote it before here and I’ll probably write it again over time, but I absolutely hate losing flies. It isn’t about the monetary loss with the average 2 dollar fly at risk. No, for me it’s about ‘that’s my little trooper and I’d like it back pretty please’. I do understand that losing flies is part of the collateral damage when I cast them away from my protection precariously attached to tiny tippet into battle. Casualties happen, I get that, but I still mourn my little soldiers when I lose one.

So imagine how me, the Mother Bear Fly Protector, handles losing something in the Great Outdoors that falls into a bigger scale than say, a 2 dollar fly. Not so well.

I lost something yesterday that still has my stomach in knots and my mind twisted up into panicked loss mode.

Long story short: At the beginning of April I finally sucked it up and bought a REALLY nice pair of Patagonia waders. Hello Cha-Ching on the cost front. I took them down to the one river that was still open during the Idaho river lock down and tested them out. That would be one maiden voyage and I loved them. Since then I’ve done a lot of non-wadeable fishing so they have been waiting patiently for June 1st when the rivers opened back up. This weekend I went camping, not with fishing in mind, but morel mushroom picking on the agenda. However, I brought the pristine waders with me just in case I could get some little stream fly fishing in.

I didn’t. So when it was time to leave, I put the once used waders back into the backpack they had rode up in. An expensive day backpack at that, and handed my precious cargo to the official ‘pack the truck bed and go person’……..Fast forward to home. No backpack. Which means. Backpack lying either on dirt road or highway somewhere over 120 miles back….. Which means. No more Spendy Backpack. Which means. No Patagonia Waders. Which means. Puke. Which Means. I’m still sick and will remain sick for the pending future.

It’s not the first time I’ve lost something that was either expensive or important to me in the Great Outdoors. I’ve had some fishing gear that was stolen from me, but that isn’t the same as losing things and deserves a different type of blog entry (the who believes in break arms first and ask questions later quandary)—-Today I’m writing about simply losing things. Poof-Gone-Cry about it in your sleep or blog sort of kick to the gut.

The other item I lost in the Great Outdoors that the memory, years later, has the ability to bring a lump to the my throat and constrict my breathing abilities was a diamond.  A beautiful diamond pendant that I always wore around my neck and despite other opinions that I shouldn’t have been wearing it out fly fishing — seriously, no one needs to hear a stupid opinion like that AFTER it’s gone — was lost in the river. Devastated…

I’ve read that when things go missing a person is supposed to emotionally let them go and if they are meant to come back, well I guess presto, they come back. Well so far my diamond has never come back and unless some miracle happens over my waders that produces a happy ending, I’m not holding my breath.

Misery loves company, so today as I’m crying in my empty Patagonia waders box, I’m wondering about others out there. Who else has lost something in the Great Outdoors that they still feel a solid boot kick to the gut over? Nippers don’t count…..

Rebecca aka Waderless Water Swatter

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