March 31st, 2008

Keeping Fly Fishing New
By James Castwell


As most of you are painfully aware, I try to crank out one of these columns every week. Some would actually say, weakly. Occasionally I will become inspired and write it on a Monday or Tuesday. But, invariably when I do, someone will write about the same subject on the bulletin board along about Friday and there I am stuck with what looks I stole the idea. So, mostly I do not write this until Saturday evening, sometimes even Sunday.

However, all during the week I have had an eye open and an ear tuned for a subject. This past week I had one in mind (this now is Sunday afternoon in case you hadn't put that together yet). Subjects are fragile things. One can't think too much on them or you lose them. You can't talk about them to anyone or you will end up with a blank sheet of paper at press time. They must be cherished (even a short note made of them) and kept close but not revealed.

Often I will ask the LadyFisher if she has her column yet. By that I mean in her head, not actually written down. She will usually reply that she has and we drop it right there. If she has not yet one in mind, I might suggest that I have an extra idea if she needs one. Not often, but there have been times when she has asked what it might be.

So, all this past week I have been chewing on a topic and almost wrote it last (Saturday) evening, but didn't. Today we receive our weekly email for the 'Journal' from Neil Travis. Guess what. Oh well, so this week we both write about pretty much the same thing. So, with apologies to him, here I go.

Wouldn't it be neat if we could start out new each time we went fly fishing? No, I mean, face each time with the wonder and anticipation as those first ventures? You would still know everything you do now, but, each and every time would be yet another learning experience and step up onto another plateau of the game. I suppose some of you might say, no way; yet others might agree.

That is the opportunity we each have every time we go out. True, there is mystery in just flailing away with a rod, line and fly, hoping the gods fasten something onto the end. And I suppose there are some who find just that much rewarding, at least for the time being. Others might chose to continue learning, marching forward and gaining on the mystery of fly fishing.

Like a great dish at a restaurant. Some might want the recipe so as to produce it at home. Others would refuse it, wanting to keep the mystery alive. Learning the magicians secret does not always produce a reward.

So, to learn or not; well, for me it works. Each tidbit of information I acquire enhances my total experience. Yes, learning a few scientific names of the trouts food was included, but only after march brown, yellow sally, spinner, dun and caddis seemed not quite adequate.

By attempting to learn a bit more about the objects of my environment I expanded my appreciation of each occasion. The name of a wild flower, the name of a part of the wild flower, a new bird, identify its call, an insect, and the instar's it goes through, (what 'instar actually means') a type of cloud, fungus, frog or toad, which one is good to eat, buy a new book.

Like I said, I do it because it works for me. It helps keep everything new and exciting. Give it a try yourself. Be aware that you have the opportunity to enrich your experiences and your life just by adding a bit of information to each one. ~ James Castwell

Till next week, remember . . .

Keepest Thynne Baakast Upeth

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