On Fly Fishing

I love the peace of fly fishing. It's quiet, except for the regular sound of the river--and we know that's peaceful, people even listen to recordings of it to fall asleep. It's safe, as far as solo sports in the outdoors go, and once you're outfitted, it's pretty inexpensive, provided you don't go wild on gear. When I fly fished, I'd blunder downstream kicking rocks around, stubbing my toes through my hardware-store waders. My old fishing rod belonged to my dad, and I'd never bothered to change the line though it had sat on the reel for at least 10 years. I still managed to land a few trout, and each one seemed like a small miracle to me. Here I was, a guy with borrowed equipment and almost no technical knowledge, and I'd landed a fish. Sure, I would have starved to death if I had to do it for a living, and as a human with a brain much larger than a fish's, I have the advantage in fighting to the death. Still, it carried a bit of wonder for me: the twisted feather and fuzz that looked nothing like a fly, and me at the other end of the line, quietly enjoying the river.

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