A few weeks ago, I got shanghaied into going to another
meeting in the Capitol. Too bad there were more lawyers
By Chris Chin, Jonquiere, Quebec
Anyway, as I can't use the underground parking (too many
antennas on the roof of the truck), I have to arrive really
early to grab one of the few outdoor parking spaces. Not
too bad, as this gives me the time to have breakfast and
get my thoughts in order before the coming ordeal.
As I was loitering around the front lobby, I was watching
the city wake up,...unlimbering its parts,...going through
its diurnal cycle. The start of another beautiful spring
day in Quebec City.
I suppose that I am really too analytical, because as I was
watching the growing hustle and bustle, I kept making comparisons
with the river.
I love waking up early while camping out on the river. I like
to be up an hour before dawn to experience the river waking up.
The 18 wheelers and straight bodies jockey for positions in
the queues at the loading docks. They seem like the adult
salmon and trout, moving from mid-stream to the banks as
the sun comes out. They rub shoulders and jostle for the
best positions to hold in.
A young college student runs after a transit bus, arrives just
in time to realize that it's not the right one and circles back
to the bus stop bench. Just as over-active Grisles (juvenile
Salmon) sometimes do, driving hard off the bottom only to
refuse a big dry at the last instant, circling back and
taking up station for another offering.
A gaggle of preschoolers get shepherded out of a school bus,
line up and make their way to the museum gates. They sound
like a flight of swallows, chirping and chattering their
Wandering around the halls a bit, I bump into some of my old
IT crew who're now doing a project for the government. We chat
over a coffee, exchange lies a while and promise to go fishing
again this season. The same thing will often happen while on
the river. I'll often run into fellow anglers with whom I've
shared a run (or a pint). We'll catch up on news (and exchange
some lies). These chance encounters are very often the highlight
of a day on the river.
With a touch more of vim and vigour, I go up the stairs to
the Minister's office. The cheerful (and highly competent)
aid reminds me of Nicole, the ever present secretary at the
River Association's office. Just like any organisation (even
the river Association), you don't need to talk to the President,
nor the best Guide. The Secretary can usually get you all the
information you need. At least I get headed to the right
Sitting here waiting for the procession of lawyers, aides and
secretaries to file into the meeting, I find sanctuary in my
mind by wandering along the banks of my home waters. A brief
moment of respite from the social calamity we call natural
resource litigation. ~ Chris Chin
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
Chris is 42 years old as of this writing. He
is of Chinese origin although his parents were
born and raised in Jamaica. He has a girlfriend,
Renée. "She and her 12 year old son Vincent
started fly fishing with me in October 2002."
To learn more about the Ste-Marguerite River,
~ Christopher Chin
Our Man In Canada Archives