Our Man In Canada
December 22nd, 2008

The Spirit of Giving
By Chris Chin

It's the Holiday season. I'm not much for jumping onto the merry making band wagon. We do a gift exchange within the family, so the credit card doesn't melt from the friction in the machines. Other than that, a few odds and ends rounds out a very short gift list. Same thing on the receiving end of things, I don't get a whole pile of gifts (and, being a shy person, I'm actually not very versed in receiving them).

I did actually receive (early) a very pleasant surprise gift this past week though.

This 2008 season, I had the wonderful opportunity so meet up with some members of the internet fly fishing forum up here in Quebec. I'd been been lurking around that board for several years but had only met a handful of members over the past few seasons.

This year I finally met up with Manon, René and Simon on the (Canadian) Thanksgiving weekend. Actually, I met Manon the weekend before and we tried to catch some of the (few) elusive juvenile sea trout. Both weekends were pretty tough conditions. Cold fronts and North-Westerlies make for difficult trout and even more challenging casting.

It was however a wonderful opportunity to meet some new friends and to start planning for the 2009 season.

Months later, I get a quick e-mail from Manon saying that she needed a mailing address so that she could send me something. I really didn't think anything of this request. A few days later, … low and behold, there's a package at the door of the apartment!

I unwrap the packing and find inside a beautifully stained and hand engraved box. Inside, there is an assortment of flies. The flies are exquisite. The details of the carving showing the patience born of forethought and caring.

When I wrote back to Manon to thank her for the gift, she replied that no one had ever spent so much time helping her with her casting and fishing skills. Well, … one good turn deserved another.

I am very touched by the thoughtfulness of her gift. I hope that I'll be repaying Manon in the 2009 season with a first salmon for her on the Ste-Marguerite.

To all of my friends on various rivers and waters around the world, I would like to take the opportunity to wish you all a very Happy Christmas. ~ Christopher Chin, Three Rivers Quebec.

About Chris:

Chris Chin is originally from Kamloops, British Columbia. He has been fly fishing on and off ever since he was 10 years old. Chris became serious about the sport within the last 10 years.

"I'm a forest engineer by day and part time guide on the Ste-Marguerite River here in central Quebec. I've been fishing this river for about 10 years now and started guiding about 5 years ago when the local guide's association sort of stopped functioning."

Chris guides mostly for sea run brook trout and about 30% of the time for Atlantic Salmon. "I often don't even charge service fees, as I'm more interested in promoting the river than making cash. I like to get new comers to realize that salmon fishing is REALLY for anyone who cares to try it. Tradition around here makes some of the old clan see Salmon fishing as a sport for the rich. Today our shore lunches are less on the cucumber sandwich side and more toward chicken pot pie and Jack Daniel's."

Chris is 44 years old as of this writing. He is of Chinese origin although his parents were born and raised in Jamaica.

To learn more about the Ste-Marguerite River, visit Christopher's website. You can email Chis at: Flyfishing.christopher@gmail.com.

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