So saddened that Bill and Jan are leaving our area. Glad that he will be home and close to his grandchildren, though. Bill, we will miss you tons but look forward to fishing with you at your home waters in Georgia!
On Thursday, June 2, 2023, a 40’ moving truck is going to weigh anchor, shoving off from our apartment in Arlington, Massachusetts and shipping all our worldly belongings to the southern foothills of the Appalachian Mountains.
Thus ends a roaring-snorting, rooting-tooting, 10-year brahma ride for my wife and me in New England. The lows have been the dearth of relationships for the first few years we were here; the highs have been the depth of relationships for the past few years.
The kicks and bucks along the way have involved wrenching my back with a snow shovel four years ago, losing my left kidney to a carnal carcinoma two years ago, and replacing a hurting hip eight weeks ago.
But definitely a highlight has been the discovery of Blogflyfish. I started reading the blog about eight years ago and was so excited to get insider information about fly fishing opportunities in New England. The articles were entertaining, informative, and, best of all, practical.
Truth be told, when I found out that Blogflyfish was looking for additional writers, my hidden motive for applying was the opportunity to go on the fishing trips that the writers group took periodically.
I am, I was, and I will forever be obsessed with fly fishing. When I would read about their writers-only fishing trips to Maine and other places, jealousy would make me greener than the Incredible Hulk.
I figured if I could pass myself off as a writer, they’d have to take me along on the fishing trips, though I was not in their league as a fisherman.
So, I contacted Jo about my interest in writing for the blog and sent him a short story about one of my fishing misadventures, hoping that he’d find it interesting enough to publish.
I didn’t know it at the time, but Jo is one of the most positive and encouraging people I will ever meet. Even though the style of my story didn’t fit with all the other articles, he welcomed me as if I was Ernest Hemingway reincarnated. Little did he know that my eagerness to join the team far exceeded my fishing and writing acumen.
Ironically, because of the Covid pandemic and my health limitations, I only was able to go on one fishing trip with the team – and then I was weaker than dishwater from chemotherapy and had to come home early. So much for my scheming.
But one thing I hadn’t counted on was being blindsided by the thrill of writing. Combining that with my obsession with fly fishing, when I’d get an idea for an article, I’d get so into it that I’d have to set the alarm AT NIGHT to make me stop writing and go to bed. If Jo had know how eager I was to write, he could have charged me by the word to publish my articles, and I’d have gone broke in no time.
Alongside Jo’s kindness in letting me write for the blog, what has made writing so special has been the blog’s readership. I’ve had the unexpected opportunity to make quite a few new friends from among the subscribers and readers. In just a few short years, these have already become relationships that I cherish.
The cool thing about blogs, as opposed to magazines, is that the writers get instant feedback within hours of finishing their article.
And the great thing about Blogflyfish readers is that they are, as they say in the South, good people. They are kind, well-informed, passionate, and positive. They are not petty or mean-spirited. Every comment seems to come from a good heart and is constructive. It was that way before I began writing and I’m sure it will continue. Getting feedback on this forum has been a writer’s dream.
All that to say, this will be my last article as a writer with the Blogflyfish team, though from time-to-time, I hope Jo will let me contribute a guest article. Thank you for putting up with my rants about drag-free drifts, my frustrations with dry fly fishing, and my odd assortment of yarns about rabid otters, April Fools pranks, falling while wading, etc….
You’ve patiently let me write my way through my cancer journey, my questionable motives as a fishing partner to Doover, and how my faith and fishing are linked together.
I am so grateful that I’ve had this opportunity to write for Blogflyfish. Thanks to all.