Monday, March 25, 2013

No expectations...

Obviously, Charles Dickens was not a fly fisher. His epic tale of love, greed and manipulation was written through a completely different prism than it would have had it been penned by this wandering angler, even if the outcome is, unfortunately, somewhat familiar.

bahamas, fly fishing, bonefish, Long Island
Beautiful, but no fish.
I was just telling a friend at lunch today that most of my "big" fly fishing trips tend to be impacted in one fashion or another by elements beyond my control. And I tend spend the days and weeks leading up to "epic" trips counting my catch before a single fish comes to hand. 

Some "for instances":

Last March, I was invited to attend a writer's week at a lodge in the Bahamas. It's a far-flung place that not only requires you to get to Nassau, but then to a tiny little airstrip on at Dead Man's Cay in Long Island. The fishing was supposed to be simply outrageous. The lodge was great. The island was beautiful. But the wind blew and it rained, damn near the whole time. How many bonefish did I catch? Uh, never mind.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Pressure

Rio Grande del Norte, Trout Unlimited, Obama
The Rio Grande del Norte. Image by Josh Duplechian.

Sometimes, to get around the quagmire of politics, you have to be political. Such is the case these days with the U.S. Congress and the ideologues that can't seem to see the forest for the trees.

Thankfully, the American people still have a say, and in five locations across the country, they're getting their way. On Monday, President Obama will use his executive power to designate five new national monuments--the Rio Grande del Norte in New Mexico; the San Juan Islands in Washington; the First State National Monument in Deleware; the Charles Young Buffalo Soldiers National Monument in Ohio; and the Harriet Tubman Underground Railway National Monument in Maryland.

In fall five cases, local citizens had to rise up and make the ask--Congress and its politics made protecting these special places and their intrinsic values through the legislative branch of government virtually impossible. There are more lawmakers in Congress more interested in adhering to their steadfast ideology than they are to the will of the people.