Well I didn't think that I was going to get a chance to get a newsletter out tonight. I thought it would be late but in a surprise move here I am sitting in the car typing away. So the big news is that I failed the EFFF Masters. Why? you ask. Well I suppose I could say it was that the air was heavy. Or that I should have had a six-weight and not the five. Or maybe that the test is a bitch because you don't get to flow. But actually it's none of those things; I just wasn't meant to pass.
And that is all I'll say about it.
Or that's all I would like to say about it but that's not really fair since there has been such a huge build up. You know like for the last three weeks we've infiltrated the Dirty Harry series, had arguments on the bulletin board, discussed technical stuff that no one really understands, answered dozens of questions and then I say well fuck it yes fuck it some things are meant to happen and some aren't; I wasn't meant to pass the EFFF cleverly inferring that it's not that I'm not good enough but that life played out some mysterious hand and dealt out karma by way of a sexyloop.
Well yeah, why not? Freedom in life is being able to choose your thoughts or to stop them I choose happiness.
And of course I could go further: I could say that maybe they weren't ready for me yet (not many are you know). Hell I don't know it's life stuff; you know, it's big and full of mystery.
That and I couldn't hit 30 metres in my three attempts.
So how good are the EFFF Master instructors? is the next question. Sure they were assessing me but I was assessing them too as you do. They are good casters especially Jupp Verstraten, who is a really nice guy as well he (and Günter) are said to cast the tightest loops in Continental Europe and for this alone it was worth coming to Holland and I look forward to meeting up and casting with him again some time in the future.
Interesting stuff for me. I'm not sure I'll be quick on the retake. I didn't like the fact that no one talked to me about the test immediately afterwards. It was like Oh well, sorry Paul, that's life you know. Yep you're right there.
And the other thing was that everyone asked if I was nervous no, why should I have been? I'm pretty much unattached to these things now. I'm casting as well as I can. Apart from which I've learned the trick of turning nerves into positive energy which is cool and has a lot to do with visualisation incidentally.
Anyway, more on this later... time to refocus the site and change tack again.
A shift of emphasis
Simon Gawesworth has given me a number of lines and especially of interest is a luminous one. I shall be casting this in the dark. Should prove quite trippy and make for some great videos. I'm going to show different shaped loops forming off the tip of the rod. This will be the evolution of the Dirty Harry series.
Simultaneously I'm going to give the Rivers section a big push and start the Stillwater rewrite. We have some other ideas lined up too. I'm going to step it up a gear now that the EFFF is over. Hop, skip, smash...
So the other important question is what about the windmills and clogs then? Actually let me talk about something else you know these newsletters have been pretty wild over the last twelve months. It's been twelve months exactly since I left Australia when I decided that I had to have a break from, well, women actually. And I *sort of* succeeded. (The mind boggles really what does he mean sort of?). Erm, swiftly back to the clogs, no, windmills I think.
Yes there are a few of them around hell I've been away from New Zealand for too long now. I need to go bush and live in a tent for a couple of months and meet some like-minded people. Funnily enough the nicest Dutch girls I have met have been in New Zealand. I wonder what that says, if anything.
Tomorrow I'll be fishing somewhere possibly with Simon and slowly making my way back to the UK for the ferry on Tuesday. I had one of my Loomis rods stolen great that's all I need and of course they stole the mean 5-weight. I'd only had a couple of casts with it as well, but from those few casts I can honestly say that it was a first class rod and that the guy who stole it deserves all the bad karma now coming his way.
Road to nowhere
OK here is the real news; I have come to a decision in my life. Once I leave the UK this time I won't be settling down again for years and in fact I don't have it in my mind to settle down again. I shall be permanently on the road - and for a good while at least. I love this travelling business; I have the complete freedom to come and go as I please, little or no responsibilities, no tie-ups, no hang-ups, it's perfect for me and the one thing I love the most: fishing.
I've used the UK as a base this year and probably spent about 4 months here altogether it was important that I did this - you know head-stuff - but I can run Sexyloops on the road and not only that but I think it will be far more interesting this way. Next summer I shall be in the US/Canada, I'll buy a campervan and tour. I really can't see the attraction of working for possessions I don't need, I don't want to be tied to a mortgage and I'm damned if I'm going to work for anyone else.
I also think that by spending only one or two weeks in each town (and never coming back) I won't get into so much trouble any more. So I'm philosophical about this too it's deep basically.
Right, I have a few people to thank. Firstly I'd like to thank Frank Lopresti from the US FFF for giving me some excellent advice for the EFFF. I'd like to thank Bruce Richards of 3M for going through the hauling videos and giving me some excellent feedback. The Queen no only kidding. I'd like to thank Simon Gawesworth (Rio) for providing me with Christ knows how many flylines - many of which are only currently available in the US. Loomis (via Fishtec) for supplying me with truly superb flyrods. David Norwich for the same and especially for trying to sort out my six-weight problems at the last minute. Guide Flyfishing for the Vision clothing and yet more lines.
The other big news is that Viking Lars (and his Viking girlfriend Pauline) is coming over for a week of London Plundering. There will be casting, there will be fishing - half a day maybe more, there will be plundering, there will be riotous wine drinking out of goblets. I'll be doing some cooking (chillibeans). There will be more casting some of which will be sexy. Six-pound Sean says that we have to do more than half a days fishing and he's tying killer flies. Stonehenge will be visited plundered. Lars says that he wants to cast on top of the stones. I've told him that this may cause a fight with security. He seemed pleased by this prospect and asked if he can borrow the eight-weight.
Lars thinks I live in a tent in England and asked if he should bring a sleeping bag. No Lars, bring a reindeer skin, it's the in-thing. I take mine everywhere, comfy and warm; every flyfishingdude should have one. Especially a Viking.
I'm looking forward to seeing Lars and Pauline again I just wonder if England is ready for them yet?