I was getting the shakes last night and took a run to the local lake. Used the fly rod this time!
(Thanks to Dan as those little chartreuse hickey-doos really worked on the bluegill last night. Of course, it could be that it is that time of year when bluegill hit anything that moves.)
I got to thinking: I really, really like to go fishing. Alone. And if I never see anybody the entire day, that is even better.
Am I anti-social? I don't know...I don't think so.
As I was fishing last night, I recalled a time last year when I was on the same lake, with a friend, as we were just lobbing our baitcasters for a few hours one evening. Once the sun started to go down, there were billions of mayflies all around us. He was freaking out because of all the "mosquitoes" and I told him to look closely: you could see the bent-up rear-ends and the two "whatever they are" protruding out the back. Then I said to watch the fish and they were all over the place sucking them up off the water. Immediately, nobody around us were getting any hits. To make matters worse, the bats were starting to come out and and he was freaking. Then came the part that really irritated me: he brings out an air horn and was blasting it to scare off the bats.
Needless to say, I don't go out with him much anymore.
But that got me to thinking: Why do I fish?
I have been with guys that talk smack and it drives me nuts. Then there are guys who just want to be social and they think they need to talk the entire freaking time. And you have guys who have more equipment than you could ever afford and you have to wait for them to get it all together.
But it seems that everybody, that I know at least, all think when you are fishing that you need to catch fish. And I don't mean being out there for a few hours and finally getting one on the last cats of the day; I mean they want to catch fish almost on every cast. It drives me insane because, whenever it is "one of those days" and the fish have your number, they moan and groan and whine and thoroughly act like a six-year-old kid because they are bored.
That is why I think I go out alone. I don't really care if I catch fish. Like last night, I was watching a forlorn Canada goose just swimming a little, walking on the bank eating or just standing there, and eventually getting back in the water. It has been in the same spot now for three years. It must have lost its mate. It is there in the winter and in the summer. I felt for the old boy.
I found myself just standing there several times just looking at the trees and the sky. Then the mayflies came out--and I remembered Ric--and it was neat just watching them fly around and I was just looking at them hover in front of my nose. I vowed that NOW I would force myself to learn how to tie mayflies...I figure spent ones first then the real McCoy...
Watching the fly I was using as I pulled it through the water was also interesting as was watching the bluegills come over and attack it. I did notice a lot of them just lunged for it and backed off--very few actually attempted to eat it.
All of a sudden, it was dark...and I had been on the water for about 2.5 hours...and it seemed like ten minutes.
There was no waiting to gather together somebody's ****. I didn't have to listen to how the biggest <fish> you ever saw got away nor did I need to listen to whining or air horns. I was never asked, "Why are you just standing there?" or "Are you ready to go home yet?" I got to stay exactly as long as I wanted.
I think I like to fish alone.