The same thing played out over and over for the next half hour or so. A good cast, a good drift, a rise and inspection, and a refusal by a dumb nine inch stocked brown trout. I looked closely at the small caddis imitation between my thumb and index finger several times. Each time I thought to myself that it looked real enough to me, that it should look even better to a dumb animal, and that neither one really mattered since it was the only one I had.
Some might say not packing up because of a little rain is what separates the men from the boys, while others will argue that the fish bite the best when it’s raining. I’ll admit to using both excuses more than once to keep casting, whether I was catching anything or not. If there’s one thing fishermen are good at, it’s lying. And if there’s a close second, it’s making up excuses.
When things finally come together they feel like a fish pulling against you at the end of your line…
Patience. By definition it’s the capacity to accept or tolerate delay without getting angry or upset. My Grandmother used to tell me it was a virtue. As a high school kid in ripped jeans and a leather jacket it was the only hit song off the Guns-N-Roses “Lies” album, and today, twenty-eight years later, patience is something I seem to be in short supply of. Whatever it is I want done, I don’t want to screw around, I just want it done now. It needs to happen now. So that I can move on to more important things. Like fishing.
It was just good to finally be on my favorite stream again, and to see it in such a different way was almost refreshing. In the end on the drive home I thought about it in my head, wondering how I could put it into words that would get the true feelings across.
But this morning I came across some pictures from up on the towers, and it lead to me thinking about things that I took away from my short time in that industry. Mostly fly fishing, and a pair of old friends. In the picture I’m looking down past my boots at the featureless landscape four-hundred and fifty some odd feet below. But it wasn’t the height, and it wasn’t the memory of that specific job that made the picture special. It was my boots supporting me up on the narrow, cold steel up in the wind. They’re my wading boots.
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