Saturday, July 26, 2008

In Her Own Words

In Her Own Words: Gail wrote these words recently on yellow paper. I found them on her work table the day before her memorial service and chose to read them at the close of the remembrances section of the service.

It was a pleasant late spring day, warm and a little cloudy. It was a perfect day for fishing, but then I tend to think all days are perfect for fishing. I got to my favorite stream early. I love the anticipation of fishing. As I got into my waders and vest, I was planning which order to use my favorite flies. I grabbed my lunch and fly rod and got ready for the short hike to my favorite spot. There were no other vehicles so I knew I was ahead of the other anglers and could have my choice of spots.

Heading down to the lower part of the stream I kept an eye out for any animal activity or hunting birds. I’ve seen just about every kind of animal along streams and ponds. My favorite is the eagle or osprey diving for fish. They come from out of nowhere and I must admit their success is a bit better than mine. Before wading into the brook, I scan the water for any hatching insects. I also turn over a few rocks to see what larva might be crawling around lurking in the dark places.

I was savoring the quietness and solitary of the day. As a woman angler I meet a lot of people. Everyone wants to stop by and chat. I often am the recipient of much unsolicited advice from well-meaning men. (margin note: guys impressing me with misinformation) This year I passed my Maine Guide’s test on the first try for fishing and recreation. It’s funny, now that I have a patch on my vest and truck, I’m receiving another kind of attention. Now men come running over asking where to fish, what fly to use, where are the holding areas, is there access further down. There are plenty of opportunities to guide for free and now my opinions are suddenly very important.

Back to fishing. I could fish every day from dawn to dusk and beyond. There’s no end to the variables which can cause success or failure, and also no end to what can be blamed for an unsuccessful day.

These words are from her application to teach fly fsihing for the L. L. Bean Outdoor Discovery Program:

I am an avid fly fisherman. My husband taught me how to fly fish seven years ago and it is my opinion that you can’t fish too much nor can you catch too many fish....I actually got married on Opening Day (that’s right, April 1st); I wanted an anniversary I could remember. In my other life, I was reference librarian and believe me, fly fishing is a lot more fun.

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