Alright, I’m already a day behind and only one day has passed. So there you go. I’d like to say that cosmic weather along with perfect water temperature conspired to make the once in a spring hatch come off and I was busy catching fish so fast I melted my flyline. I’d like to say that… but I can’t. Between being a single Dad and my impending birthday (and the friends and dinners that come with it) I just managed to run clean out of time. That happens so I won’t beat myself up about it. In fact, I think being ok with that is something flyfishing has given me.
As anyone reading this knows, timing is everything in fishing. In fact, timing on top of timing on top of timing ad infinitum is everything. Right time of year, right time of day, right time in the moon cycle, right time in the weather pattern and on and on and on. In fact, it not just timing at that moment that is important. It can be the timing immediately following a PREVIOUSLY perfect timing that is important. The right calm after the right squall that followed the right barometric pressure drop etc. I’m not sure how far you could go back, but I doubt our tiny brains could wrap all the way around it anyway. It all gets very large when you start thinking about it. It also does a fine job of illustrating that skill can take you a ways, but luck and other mystical unknown forces will always hold the trump card in this sport.
Anyway, timing is important, that much is clear. I’ve had to learn to be ok with dropping everything and hitting the water when it all lines up. I mean, I was always OK with it… but I had to get right about all the “should be doing something else” thoughts that come with it. There are always blogs that were promised and laundry that could be done and floors that should be swept. If you decided never to fish until everything was complete, you may never make it to the water at all. The minutiae of life has a way of quietly swallowing up everything around it and if you aren’t careful you will one day look around and see that your whole life is simply moving from one minutiae to the next. Sure, these things do need to get done, and they will get done. In fact, I find they are all still there waiting for me when I get home. It’s amazing how few things in our lives are truly as urgent as they feel.
You see, when I’m on the water my mind can’t be back home sorting laundry, or making the bed. It has to be right there, in the moment. If I’m not consumed by the fishing, I’m not doing it right and most likely I’m not doing it well. So I’ve had to learn to stop worrying about where I should be or what I should be doing. If I made the decision to go fishing, then fishing is where I should be…end of story. Hell, fishing is a much more important part of my life and mental health than the damn dishes are. So fishing has taught me to see where I am when I am there. To live in that one breathless instant when the earth slows to a halt, the clouds stop moving, the soundtrack to our lives pauses and the fish examines my fly. The longest instant in the world.
So no, I wasn’t fishing and yes I did promise you a blog. (There was an audible outcry across the globe when I didn’t post one.) I was at my birthday dinner with two of my best friends, their daughter (who is my daughter’s best friend) and my daughter . We laughed, ate great food and annoyed the other patrons at the restaurant. That is where I was, and thanks to flyfishing that is ONLY where I was. I wasn’t half there and half at work. I wasn’t half there and half at home worrying over a blog. I was in that moment. I won’t be getting that moment again so I milked it for everything it had. If you gotta problem with me not meeting my blogging responsibility, blame flyfishing.