Welcome to Just Old Flies

Welcome to 'just old flies,' a section of methods and flies that used-to-be. These flies were tied with the only materials available. Long before the advent of 'modern' tying materials, they were created and improved upon at a far slower pace than todays modern counterparts; limited by materials available and the tiers imagination.

Once long gone, there existed a 'fraternity' of anglers who felt an obligation to use only the 'standard' patterns of the day. We hope to bring a bit of nostalgia to these pages and to you. And sometimes what you find here will not always be about fishing. Perhaps you will enjoy them. Perhaps you will fish the flies. Perhaps . .

Part Fifty

October's Song

By Old Rupe

This is the time of the year I pull the boat on Lake Erie, winterize my trailers, hang up my rods and tie flies and gaze into my coal oil lamp. Its a sad time. I avoid my responsibilities as long as I can.

I call my marina manager and in a pleading tone ask, "How's the water?" He tells me there is no use coming up this weekend to pull the boat. No one has pulled a boat for the last three days. We have 20 to 30 mile per hour winds from the south. One more day of this and robins will be walking on the floor of my marina. Those of you who don't follow robins should know they have short legs and dislike walking in water. A sad prognosis. He has re-tied my boat since the marina only has 11 inches of water over the mud.

I gave up a fishing trip to the Mad River with my friend Dave this weekend. The water there is low, but I don't have a boat depending on my performing my thing, residing on the bottom of the river. Sometimes a boat can be an albatross around the neck. In good times it's a blessing but in adverse times it haunts every waking thought.

I went up on Saturday and found less than 12 inches of water in my marina. I went to Jimmies and had several Absolutes (they don't serve Fosters Lager-definitely a lower class place) and said several special spells that demand a North wind that will fill up my marina. My 96 year old mother was with me so I left before I was standing in the center of the floor exhorting the Gods for special winds. On the way to my trailer I stopped at my boat mechanic for solace. He promised me that the boat would go out this weekend. Harry Tommer operates the best marine repair shop on Lake Erie. He's honest and he only has to fix it once. If you need it next weekend, tell him, it will be ready. Don't tell him you need it and don't show up for the boat. A real error. Harry will work day and night to get you a boat when you need it but don't lie to him. You will find that Harry doesn't need your business. A boat when you need it at an honest price. What a precious thing.

Sunday opened with less than a foot of water in my marina. Harry said Monday would be the day. I had faith and retreated to my trailer and drank Fosters Lager and tied flies. Mom said trust old Harry. After several nasty looks at the flag pole I relaxed and ate mom's good cooking. I managed to sneak away and measured 13 inches off the back of my boat at 5 PM on Sunday. I noticed that no ducks or geese were swimming in my marina. Harry said keep the faith. He said, "Show up at 9 AM and we will pull the boat."

I showed up and we got it pulled. Mom was right . Trust old Harry. He even got me a plumber to fix my trailers water line leak and winterize my trailer.

One can be generous with life when your boat is sitting at your mechanics shop. Life is great. You even drive by several times a day and just look at it sitting there. It's not gloating, even though you are not as sorry as you were when the boat was still in the water. He whose boat is safe is just less sensitive than he was when his boat was at risk. Those other dummies will just have to make do. Sorry about your luck.

Sorry mom that's just the was it is. If it's your ox that is gored, times are tough. Guard your ox. ~ Old Rupe

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