There is not a whole lot a guy can do these days by
himself to amount to much of anything. It seems our
society demands we all 'be team players,' for whatever
that may be worth. Personally I don't think much of the
idea. First of all, are we supposed to work for someone
who is obviously not as smart as we? You can see how
silly the whole concept can be.
Oh sure, there are times when the team thing is imperative,
the military comes immediately to mind, but, I am referring
to much of what we do for a living. Things like, 'Don't make
waves,' 'Keep your head down,'and in the old west it was
'Ride for the brand.' However we all have psychological
needs to be filled, itches that need scratching. Fly-fishing
can offer that to a certain lucky few so inclined.
We have an inner longing for fulfillment of our selves, the
need to 'be somebody,' to 'be recognized' as more than just
a fine 'team player.' The searching and learning which
fly-fishing offers is a constant lure, a sirens call to
those with ears to hear and minds to follow. And we want
it right now.
Yes. Today we want everything right now, fast is the
operative word for everything. It matters not that many
can't pass a grade in school, social-pass them outta there,
move 'em on. Faster cars get you there faster, bigger and
faster PC's, crash courses in everything imaginable. Not
so with fly-fishing though. Or, at least it should not be so.
Fly-fishing is not something I do. Oh, yes, I 'do' fly fish,
but, fly-fishing is far more than that. It is a state of being,
a way of life, a code of ethics. It is a journey, not a
destination, and here is where so many fail to notice the
real truth in their headlong pursuit of the rewards of 'becoming
a fly-fisherman.' The truth is, you are a fly-fisherman when
you say you are. Only you can define yourself, no one else.
A person with only one fly rod is as much a fly-fisher as
he who has a hundred. He who only fishes a few days a year
is as much as any who fish nearly every day. It is not so
much about what you have, how often you use it, but how
you feel about it.
There are those who in the eternal quest for the goal will
buy more and more equipment, take lessons, try to learn as
much from anyone who will help them, and make work of it.
The fly rod for instance; yours is good enough. So is your
reel and line and boots and vest and flies and all the rest
of your stuff; it's all just fine. The real fly-fishing is
out there, out on the stream, that's where it is and that
is where you will learn more about it. Sure, you can read,
take lessons, and all that, but, you will only learn fly
fishing by doing it. And doing it some more, and some more.
Try not to get all hung up on your equipment, get hung up
instead on a branch with your back-cast. It is great to
think about it, read about it, learn about it, and even
live it. But, the real deal is doing it. Be observant of
everything around when you are on the stream or lake, take
it all in. Study the water, it's seams, the weeds, bugs,
stones, everything you can see. Your fly rod is just a
stick, there is so much more to it than that.
P.S. I won't be here next week, I will be bone
fishing. Wait a week and then
Click Here for next weeks issue.
~ James Castwell