Some of the comments at the recent Idaho Fish-In
were quite interesting. There is always the fun
of putting faces on names we've seen in the Chat
Room or on the Bulletin Board, but one of the very
intuitive comments made to me was what a joy it was
for folks to meet Al Campbell.
Al hasn't been able to make a Fish-In since the one
he hosted in the Black Hills several years ago.
He manages the fly-fishing department of a Sheels
All-Sport store in Rapid City, SD, and has, up until
this year, always had a 'date' for an annual trip to
the Big Horn River. His fishing partner was building
a new house this year and wasn't able to make the
trip - which allowed Al the opportunity to come to
Idaho. It was still 'touch and go' as to if he could
since his fly-fishing department was being expanded and
he was doing a great share of the remodeling work. However,
he did make it and that was a real treat for the folks at
the Fish-In. He did some tying instruction and made a
point of fishing each day with someone he had not fished
with at the Black Hills Fish-In.
One of the recipients of that was Cole Martin, the youngest
person at the Fish-In. Cole is from Great Falls, MT., and
has been active in the Chat Room. His fly fishing and tying
got a super jump forward with Al's coaching, as did Cole's
Al also made a point of fishing with the oldest person at
the Fish-In. Ray Donley, Salt Lake City, UT. Ray has
been a "Friend of FAOL" for several years, and emailed
me early to say he was going to come. He may have been
the oldest, but trust me, there were a lot younger people
at the Fish-In who would have difficulty keeping up with
him or his schedule. He also skis and fishes for stripers
and salmon. We hope he will join us on South Andros to
play with the bonefish!
Another of the comments regarding Al was how nice he is - that
he is just like 'us.' I laughed and told the person,
"hey, we're all just folks!" And we are. If you think
Al, JC or I walk on water, guess again. We sink.
The only difference is we are/were all writers who felt
there was/is a need for a website which would give the
fly fisher good, honest information. Fly Anglers OnLine
(FAOL) gave all of us an opportunity to do that. We all
wanted to see a place where folks could come together and
be part of a community. The Chat Room, Bulletin Boards
and Fish-Ins are both an end and a means to do that.
The world we live in is less and less personal and
caring - but here at FAOL you can find as much or
little interpersonal relationship as you wish. It
is a place to share the best and worst in your life.
And in that sharing you enrich the lives and
understanding of others. Pretty cool stuff.
Trust me, all of us are very grateful for the opportunity
and success of FAOL.
To all who were at the Idaho Fish-In '03, thanks for
the hugs - and the memories!
~ The LadyFisher
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post your views on the FAOL Bulletin Board!