Andy Dear | Thursday, 5 November 2020

A good fishing partner is one who's always a little worse than you are.


Over the years I've had the great pleasure to spend time on the water with too many anglers to count. Many were one time events with the odd client who happened to be visiting Texas, or a family member who simply wanted to see what it is that I actually do. And, as much as I enjoy fishing by myself, I equally, or perhaps even more so enjoy the company of a like minded individual...preferably one with a sharp sense of humor. Of all the anglers I've had the pleasure of spending time with, by far my favorite is my son Jackson. I know I'm speaking from a heavily biased, parental position, but his love of the sport is jjust a joy to watch. He's a real waterman with a level of maturity and mastery over his fly fishing and fly tying skillset that a 12 year old simply shouldn't be allowed to possess.

  Not far behind Jack is my old pal Jesse "J.J." Alonzo who has been a regular character not only in many of these Front Page stories, but in my life as well. And believe me, if there was ever an adjective to describe Jesse, "character" is it. As many times as J.J. and I have ventured onto the water or into the woods, the enjoyment of my time spent alongside him never gets old. Whether he's carrying a firearm or a fishing rod, he's as solid of a man as they come, and every year I spend on planet earth, he becomes a more valuable asset in my life. The stories he and I have amassed over the years are the type that you tell your kids about. You know, the kind that usually are told from a creaky old rocking chair, with a glass of good whiskey in hand, and usually begin with something like "Back in the good old days the fish were so thick you could walk across the water on their backs...." Even though the memories of our shared experiences may contain as much fiction as fact, the amount of fun we've had over the years together does not. Hopefully, J.J. and I can have many more before we actually DO have to use that rocking chair.

  This coming weekend I have the privilege of spending time with someone I've never fished with before but have known since 1984. Kent McCaslin is an old high school friend whom I haven't seen in 30 years, but got back in touch with through social media a few years ago. Although he now resides out on the east coast of the U.S. his family still lives here in the great state of Texas. A few weeks ago he messaged me to say he was going to be in town for an extended visit and would it be possible to wet a line while he was here. Possible? Yes. Probable? Absolutely. Kent and I had several mutual interests back in the 80's. but ironically enough neither of us was aware that fishing and hunting were among them. This Saturday however we are going to fill in the gaps of the last thirty years on a private lake in a town not much more than a fly speck on the map called Dunlay. Whether or not we actually catch anything remains to be seen, but it doesn't really matter one way or the other though. At this stage in my angling life, the enjoyment I get out of creating experiences and memories with someone who appreciates time well spent on the water is as gratifying as any actual "catching" that may take place.

Hope you all have a great week,