Fact 1: The focal length of the trout's eye is 24 inches
Fact 2: Buzz Airlines are crap
Fact 3: Sean (unlike Carl) is not relaxed when driving at high-speed cross-country and even less so when I'm driving
And so begins another Sexyloops flyfishing adventure.
The mission: to reach Lough Corrib in Ireland by way of late aircraft (Buzz are always late; it's what makes them exciting – never fly with them BTW if either arrival times or good-looking air hostesses are important to you, for that popular slogan “Buzz are Bollocks” is an indication of exactly what you can expect in both departments).
Fact 1: Sexyloops is now updated 7 days a week
Fact 2: Sunday's page is now Sean's weekly column
Fact 3: “Sean on Sunday” makes Sean sound like a vicar and he is anything but
I'm writing this on Friday night live from the airport. Sexyloops newsletters usually get written between Friday afternoon and Sunday night; it's almost a tradition. The rest of the site gets knocked together the night before, making it to be both cutting edge and spontaneous. This is the Internet: instant publishing.
That I appear to be the only one in the flyfishing industry who is aware that this is the true power of the Internet, fazes me not in the least.
Fact 1: The power of the Internet is instant publishing
Fact 2: Every time I visit Carl (from Denmark or Bust) he gives me one of his jumpers
Fact 3: Relationships between flyfishers and the womenfolk are destined to failure
Try putting those facts together and the confusion you now enter upon is the confusion that is my mind, which is of course exactly why I am trying to stop thinking; my thoughts simply don't make any sense and in thinking them I am losing my mind (which may or may not be the whole point).
I find myself rather liking Berlin. It's full of attractive German chicks as well as hosting the fantastic U- and S-Bahn networks (in which one can spend many interesting and varied hours getting thoroughly lost, both above and below ground level)
Apart from this, much of my week was involved in conversations about why it is that flyfishermen make for terrible relationships (with the particular emphasis being upon this flyfisher). For the record: I'm as unreliable as Buzz, I'm always changing plans when the fishing is good (and even when it's not) and I'm just plain different to other people, having a completely alternative set of priorities in life (most of which involve fish).
The rest of the week was taken up falling down drunk with Carl.
On Wednesday however, I broke the mould and did something rather different. On Wednesday I went Rapfen fishing.
Fact 1: Rapfen is German for Asp
Fact 2: Asp is a fish-eating cyprinid unfound anywhere in the UK
Fact 3: They can be as difficult to catch as the Mugwai (especially so in the UK)
Mario had failed to make me fully aware upon this fact and so I arrived outside his house, by way of a very complicated journey utilising both the S- and U-Bahn in various different directions (at one time I may even have passed myself and I certainly surpassed myself). I arrived if not on time, then certainly brimming with optimism. Mario is a bit of a Rapfen expert on the sly and just my sort of fishing buddy – for one thing he is quite happy fountain flyfishing, and he said we would catch Rapfen and he made it sound as though we would catch many.
He is a Rapfen expert, he said, and has had even made a TV program all about them.
Fact 1: Mario and Christopher Rownes (also from Denmark or Bust) made a Rapfen-on-ze-fly German TV program together
Fact 2: It took them two days to catch one fish
Fact 3: Mugwai fishing is in different league guys
Let me tell you everything I know about Rapfen - this won't take long. They remind me of a big roach. They eat little fish, or nothing. They don't have teeth. And you can only catch one every two days. And Mario caught it. Bugger.
If you ever find yourself Rapfen fishing this is what you do. First you look for a weir.
Next you cast your large fish-imitating fly pattern alongside the edge of the main current. You jerk-retrieve it back again rather quickly. You repeat the process either for two days or until one of you catches a fish.
The Buzz flight arrived in Stansted at 1 am, two hours later than scheduled (but the hostesses were peaches, completely destroying the integrity of this newsletter).
In Sean's Car
Sean said: "It's four hundred miles to the ferry, we have three and a half hours to get there, we have half a tank of petrol, it's dark and you're wearing sunglasses"
I said: "Hit it"
The Terminal Ferry
That we made the ferry at all was impressive. That we made the ferry on time must go down as one of the greatest driving achievements in the history of the motorcar. Sean drove the first half and we talked about our women problems, well mainly my women problems (says Sean)… not enough sex, too much sex and an inability to communicate on any level. I drove the second half and Sean gave up talking and started mumbling incoherently to himself whilst staring blankly into the distance.
It's like that when you put too much feeling into a topic sometimes and flyfisherman are emotional people (even Sean).
On the ferry we met up with Sean's friend Tom and Tom's dad Tony. These are the guys who have accepted the onerous task of putting Sean and I on to as many Corrib trout as humanly possible. They are expert anglers (they'll have to be) and they even appear to have something approaching a schedule.
Fact 1: Barbel roe is highly poisonous, as discovered by 16th Century French philosopher Gazius when he fed some to his family by way of experiment
Fact 2: Sexyloops is a happening thing over and above all schedules and I just let things happen
Fact 3: Sean needs some "quiet time for contemplation, meditation or failing this he'd just like to get drunk"
We are now based upon the shores of Lough Corrib. Our home for the next seven days, it's going to be both exciting and dramatic. We have stocked up on wine and chillies. There is mayfly about. The trout have yet to fully appreciate this in any meaningful way. We are optimistic that they will do so before we leave and if they don't then sod them.
This Week on Sexyloops
There is new content going in everywhere. Steve is still dropping movies into the Movies Archive. The site is being made tighter. The articles section has been revamped with site bites ("what the hell are they?"). The glossary is expanding. The bulletin board has become a talking point. I'm going fishing. And the front page changes seven days a week.
Life's exciting, isn't it?