So I have travelled up to the North Island for a bit of intense action that is Saltwater Fly. You know, things on the trout scene had been pretty active and I'd been having a bit of a blast with both brown and rainbow trouts, but nothing, absolutely nothing, can compare to the action that comes with saltwater fly. For one thing it's exciting and possibly even dangerous. You never know what could happen next. I've been fishing the salt for over 10 years now (and have caught a remarkable 10 fish in that time, making me a bit of an expert) and I have The Panel on my side and so it should come as no surprise to anyone regular and coherent that I may have had a take.
It may not have been so, of course. Saltwater fly is like that: you never really know for sure. I may have been sleeping and have dreamt the whole thing up. That often happens.
Here is the news. I intend, every Friday, notice the word "intend" by the way; that could be important, to release a video. Friday will become video day. And I plan to make it educational, notice the word "plan" by the way, that's bollocks that is - I never plan anything. Perhaps even a flycasting video. This could even become a regular feature of Sexyloops. He says, really believing it.
For Saturday Steve and I do actually have a plan and just as soon as I find a proper Internet connection we will enact upon it.
Off the Pulse
I don't know if you come to Sexyloops on a daily basis, believe it or not some do; it sends you a bit crazy. Well if you do then you'll know that the front page reflects my current travels - give or take a day - and that last week, in a moment of supreme inspiration, I managed to get the Pulsewagon well and truly stuck. I'm not entirely sure how it happened. There I was, one moment searching for a hidden river in a hidden valley, and then the next I was sticking branches beneath the wheels, trying to pretend I was having fun.
Fortunately some guy called Tony happened to be travelling the same path and we managed to pull the car out. This feat was not without certain dramas however especially since neither of us had rope. One of us did happen to have a spare flyline (me) and I made this video to commemorate the achievement.
Tony said he thought I was very fit for a flyfisherman - I was running along the road at the time. I said I was no normal flyfisherman; I was in fact a "run-flyfisherman" and I nodded knowingly to prove to him that he was indeed in the company of someone who knew stuff he didn't. Tony said that he had never heard of such a thing. I said that this was because I just invented it.
Run-flyfishing, a new and exciting sport
Yes, you have heard it right, I have just invented run-flyfishing. We've talked about it for a while, but only jokingly, and now, after one intensive run-flyfishathon I can finally say that I have done something worthwhile in my life. I can't tell you the name of the river, because it's a mystery, but it was a river, and there were some trout in it, I spooked several and in a moment of true Sexyloops inspiration I went running and flyfishing together in one glorious afternoon.
Of course some people may say, "Why Paul? Why combine the thrills of running with flyfishing? Running is a very exciting activity anyway, I mean you move your legs, see stuff, sometimes very quickly, especially when it's downhill, why do you need to add flyfishing to this already thrilling activity?"
Because no one else has and it makes a lot of sense. Now I know what you're thinking; you're thinking it may make sense to go run-flyfishing in NZ where they have mountains and tracks which take three days to walk, hell run-flyfishing under such circumstances makes perfect sense and it's a wonder that everyone doesn't do it; "What you mean you flyfish NZ and you're not a runner? What are you crazy?" but in the UK, it may have a limited usage. This is true. I can't avoid this fact and if you are a flyfisher in the UK you may want to hold off on the investment of felt-soled running shoes and camo-coloured running shorts for a little while yet.
I will be doing more of this and it may even become my thing.
On Thursday I fished with a couple of friends near Turangi. Okay I'll come clean here. If you have been following the front pages you will now be confused. You'll be thinking, "Tuesday run-flyfishing - cool idea, Wednesday Spring Creeks, Thursday smelly polyprops, Friday Rio flylines towing Pulsewagons out of muddy holes, Saturday North Island… something doesn't fit, could it be that Paul is working ahead of himself or just that he has no idea where the hell he is?"
Yes, that'll be it.
And I fished in Camouflage. Now before you write in to tell me that I've been taking the piss out of people who wear camouflage for years and especially Camo-Guy who appears to have a fetish for the stuff, let me also point out that there are others who wear this stuff, including the Walkie Talkie Deano and even our very own Mike Connor. And these people appear, by and large, to be sane. Or if not sane exactly then at least sensible. And so I thought I'd give it a go for myself.
And it works; by dressing up like a tree you do actually scare less fish, you look like you know what you're doing and it's cool. Once again I'd like to point you to this celebratory video I made of Camo-Guy last season. It does in fact explain everything :-)
We managed to catch a few fish on our travels through the undergrowth, in spite of not knowing where each of us was.
It's been rather nice to visit the North Island; I haven't been here for years. While up here I have a few people to visit, especially Herb Spannagl from The Board and the Slip article, and I also dropped in to visit my friends from Bellbird Lodge. In the past I've spent a couple of summers in their company and it was good to catch up again. They were surprised to find out that I am now a vegetarian. So how does that work then and what's it all about? - because I get asked this a lot and it's actually quite interesting I think.
There are two major underlying reasons for me not wanting to eat meat. The first is that I don't want to eat anything that is dead; putting some dead flesh into my mouth is actually quite a revolting thought and I can't understand why anyone would want to do this. Just look at a road victim and tell me that's something you'd like to eat.
The other major reason is that I don't want to harm anything. Now I know that by just being here, existing, I am going to harm other creatures and that is a fact of life, but in my mind (and that's what counts in this instance) there is something fundamentally wrong in actively harming something for whatever reason. In fact, that's not surprising really since it is something fundamental to basic human values.
It wasn't always like this; I used to eat meat. And I didn't stop for either of the above reasons. Life isn't like that. I stopped because I moved in with someone who didn't eat meat and I wasn't doing the cooking. Yeah, I know, call it coincidence, synchronicity, laziness or whatever, but that's how it happened and I thought, "Yeah, I'll try this Veggie thing out for a while, it won't kill me, probably, I won't have to cook and I've been fundamentally unhappy about my diet for the last two years." (That last bit may come as a surprise but run-flyfishers have to look closely at their calorie intake, besides I was into Triathlon, which is almost as demanding but without the flies).
I now believe that being a vegetarian is healthier, I noticed my running times leap forward and I feel healthier. I don't thing that humans are carnivores; I think that we have just conditioned ourselves to believe that we are - which is dumb. As far as my understanding goes the human body doesn't break down meat very well, and that is why meat eaters have to rest after eating, sometimes even sleep. Meat eaters in general are overweight - not a sign of good health. Meat doesn't taste good, that's why they cook and spice it up.
Psychologically we are not meat eaters either. Take a run-over possum "fresh" from the road and stick it on a meat eaters plate and say, "There you go, start from the stomach out, that's how carnivores really eat" - and see if I'm wrong.
And farming is terrible; feeding grains to animals so that we can eat meat is inefficient, totally unjustifiable and actually it's pretty sick when you stop to think about it.
But if you are going to become a vegetarian, then make sure you have a well-balanced diet, meat eating is so ingrained that it is very difficult to eat sensibly.
That is why I invented Chillie-Beans. With two tins of beans and one jar of chillies you too can become a fit and heathy flyfisherman, and you'll be able to impress the ladies with your cooking skills…
On the Road
This week I'll be fishing. There will (probably) be a video. There will be a fly. Mike and Sean are both writing. And there may be some other stuff.
Have a great week!!