Monday, July 21, 2008

Beginner's Luck

Let’s see, when last I left my blog I was looking at fish in a stream in California. As a friend and reader reminded me not too long ago, “You haven’t written anything for more than a year.”
True enough, and while blogging can be a mixed blessing (sort of like children, or being born good looking instead of rich) it is fun. Now I’m back.
My problem (Old people have problems. Young people have issues.) was that shortly after that trip to California in 2007, my world began to tilt. Then, on the night of a blue moon in May 2007, the unthinkable happened and things got topsy turvey. While trying to find the right words to tell my boss I was quitting, he called and offered me a promotion! Talk about a conundrum. I made the big error of not asking, “how much more money?” before I said “yes.” I promised him a year to see how it would all work out.
Now, closing in 14 months, I finally have my beak far enough above water to be able to take a breath—and get back to blogging. It’ll take a while to get back into my stride, so hang with my faithful readers. Thanks for asking.
And to sort of pick up where I left off—with fishing—a short note about a trip to the stream a couple days ago. Fishing buddy Tom (retired and looking for more playmates) has been talking about chasing some smallmouth bass at a secret spot on the Cuyahoga River. Anyone who has not been left mentally impaired by those great days of the late 1960s remembers the Cuyahoga as the river that caught on fire. There were songs about it; now there’s even a microbrewery beer available celebrating that infamous day of environmental history.
In any case, we’d be fishing far up stream from the historical footnote place. (In truth, the river runs quite clean these days, fodder for another blog.)
Tom and I, and his long-time buddy Jon hit the stream early in the morning. Not so early for a guy who still has a real job, however, it was early for those retirees. The guys gave me the lay of the land, stream, actually. My experience with other fishers, me included, is to put the new guy off in some direction so as not to interrupt the real fishing spots. I just wrote it off to paying my dues. Jon headed up stream at a pace. Tom selected a little island to fish around, and I waded downstream to a likely looking spot. Karma was with the nubie. Before Tom had a fly on the water, and while he was still within ear and eye shot, I was hooked up with the first smallmouth of the day.
Right, beginners luck after about 40 years of fly fishing.