I ought to start by thanking everyone who sent me their best wishes as I wrote my last blog from my hospital bed after suffering a heart attack. To bring you up to date I had an angiogram, a stent fitted and was sent home the next day with strict instructions to take it easy! Now, that is easier said than done especially as I was feeling better than I had for a long time and I soon wanted to go fishing again. For the first few days my wife didn’t want to let me out of her sight so she said that she would come with me, we took the minimum of gear and went to the pond over the road which the club had been renovating. It was a freezing morning for April so we were both dressed up to keep warm.
I decided that I would just use the float rod and try the usual tactic of fishing shallow and deepening up until I found the fish or the weed. It wasn’t long before the float dipped and it was the first of many tench. They don’t grow very big and the missus was amazed by the colour as they were the first live tench she had ever seen. I suppose there was a fish every few minutes, mostly tench but with the occasional rudd. All the bites were tentative so you had to keep a sharp eye on your float! I was fishing red maggot which I found works well on this water but towards the end of the session switched to white and first cast hooked a different fish. It began to take line as the drag was very lightly set but I soon got it to the net and could see that it was a crucian or at least a brown goldfish. I tried for another one but only caught another tench so decided that as the missus was complaining about being cold and it was nearly lunchtime we would go home. Still, it was nice to get on the bank doing something that I enjoy again.
The following week was one of those manic ones where you have something going on every day so much for taking it easy! I didn’t have time to go fishing but I did get time to think about it and one of my trains of thought was about lugging all my gear to a swim. Being in a fairly rural area our club waters tend to be farmer’s reservoirs or disused gravel pits and the car park can be a good walk from the water. Normally I can manage this with a secondhand barrow and a few stops along the way but as I am not supposed to be overdoing it I asked on the club’s Facebook page which waters had swims where you could park the car next to them. The replies I got showed me that I don’t know the club’s waters as well as I thought I did!
I also snatched a few moments to read and came across a paragraph by Arthur Ransome which seemed to sum up my feelings about blanking and whether or not the session was then a waste of time.
“It began, instead with a lesson on failure in general. Failure it seems, depends entirely on our choice of what we are to consider success. For just so long as I was full of ambition to fill a basket with large grayling the day was a miserable failure. As soon as I abandoned this ambition as fantastic the day turned into success. Until this moment of, if you like, resignation, I had not known that I was enjoying myself very much. That was because I had been ruling out all the pleasure except that of catching grayling and these were not to be caught. I was now open to pleasure of other kinds.”
Seems to sum it up well and I must remember that it is not all about catching and there are other pleasures to be obtained in going fishing. I wonder if I will remember that the next time that I blank!