For my independent learning project this week I am in Wyoming with my Grandpa and my two first-cousins on a fishing trip. The fly rod has been packed, and I am excited to hit the river tomorrow. There will definitely be a learning curve in place for me. I have fly fished off and on for a year, but have never been on a true trout stream. The stream in question tomorrow is the North Platte River, which is one of the most-prized trout streams in the area. T0 be clear I’m just here to have fun and maybe learn a thing or two. I am not vain enough to think I’m going to be a world-killer my first time on a legit river. Yet, I do harbor the hope that I will catch something, but if I don’t I will the blame on myself due to decision making and inexperience.
I can see my novice-self tomorrow morning in the fly shop: “Uggghh, what kind of flies are they biting on up on the North Platte.” To be clear in the fly fishing world there is absolutely no way to hide that feeling of being a tourist when talking to professional fly fisherman. Maybe I’m self conscious but it seems that half of the pros treat you like gold and the other half act as if they achieved everything under the sun by themselves. I compare it to golfing; there are the club professionals that hit the course with a six-pack, ready to invite anyone on their card. The kind of guy that makes you play better because of his demeanor. Then there is the golf professional that is good, but is privileged, a jerk, and has to play alone due to this belief that he will figure out all the worlds problems in one round of golf. I will term this type of professional “that guy.” The trouble with “that guy” and fly fishing shops, is that I don’t know the shops around here. So I have a fifty-fifty chance of running into “that guy.” But this guy has no way to affect my day tomorrow, I’m convincing myself of that.
Fly fishing, to me, has no end outside of mortality. That is a rare thing. Life is constantly full of moments and times that end: school ends, friendship ends, home ends, children leave, jobs are left, books end, movies end, the day ends. Fly fishing has the feeling that it is endless, and this is a very powerful feeling. This weekend will eventually close, but complete closure in the scope of fly-fishing, not a chance.