26 December 2010

It's Christmas in Maine

Well, yet another Christmas has come and gone. I've been back in Maine for almost two months now and everything there was to look forward to during my stay here, birthdays, Thanksgiving, Christmas, etc, has passed in kind. There is but one thing left on the horizon now, and to be honest it's only ever been the one thing. Though my time home has been great, it wasn't ever so much a destination as a stopover on my way elsewhere, somewhere to warmer climes and hungry fish. That somewhere is New Zealand. Many other feasible options that easily fulfill those requisites were carefully considered, such as Patagonia, Panama, Baja, but the deck was stacked from the beginning, ultimately before I even left there in the first place. And so it is. I fly out in less than four days.

I've been pretty excited off an on, but more than anything I've been preoccupied with other stuff. Though I'll be happy to get there, I have a feeling I won't get super giddy about anything until I see that first fish feeding. Or maybe the night before that, when we're sitting around a campfire drinking Speights and whiskey, figuring out what to rig up for the next morning. Making sure the line is stretched, leaders straightened, tippet measured and tied, knots carefully tightened. Laser sharp focus as the boxes are examined and the exact fly selected. All the while the dialogue gets you even more fired up as everyone builds off each other, hypothetical scenarios back and forth of ideal conditions and success of epic proportions. But no, not even that will compare to that first dimpled surface, that little bit of nervous water that you recognize as the tell. And then your confidence implodes and all hell breaks loose as you feel your stomach tighten, that nervousness like when you're about to go ask a hot girl out. You're hands get all sweaty and you start to shake a little bit. Your heart's pounding in your throat when that voice pops into your head: What is that, 40 feet or 45? That drift looks pretty tricky...Should I go down to 5x? Sheesh, this breeze isn't doing me any favors. The inner monologue almost tries to convince you out of it, but you want to do it, you know you will do it, cuz if you don't you're definitely not gonna get any tail. You just know that pulling the trigger on this means actualizing the outcome of those scenarios played out in your head, and some were equally as crushing. But it's New Zealand, and you brought your A-game. And you've been waiting a looong time to get down here. And you really, really want a piece of that tail...

I'll let you know how it goes.

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