Monday, August 20, 2012

It's Been Too Long


What the….

I punch the snooze, roll over, and burrow deeper under the covers, trying to recall the last time I was roused by an alarm clock. The recollection won’t come. Instead, a number of plausible explanations as to why I can’t remember begin to solidify in the sleepy haze, gaining substance while last night’s odd assortment of inadequacy dreams dissolve to nothingness. Two trains of consciousness, passing in the dark awakening.

Why can’t I remember? To be sure, my memory isn’t what it once was, but that’s too easy an answer. It’s also true that I now live a life unfettered by rigid schedule, scorning all “must be somewhere” situations that require unnatural temporal intervention. A clock, much less an alarming one, is a tad incongruous and easily forgotten. But it’s not that either. The real reason takes a moment to surface and, when it does, it’s enough to push me from under the covers and into the quiet darkness of the house.

It’s been too long since I’ve been trout fishing.


Now, I’ve been on the water my fair share this year (forty-four days, according to my journal) but it’s been months since I’ve been out for trout. Instead, it’s been largemouths, smallmouths, carp, redfish. Fish that live close by. Fish that don’t mind summer heat. Fish that move in patterns independent of their orientation to the sun. Fish I can get to at my leisure. But not trout. Unlike the others, trout conjure alarm clocks. You see, the closest cold water is a few hours away and I like to be in the stream to watch the morning mists rise.

So I get up and move quietly through the dark house, bare feet on cool concrete. Dress. Eat breakfast. Slip out the side door. The truck is packed and I'm on the road as light begins to bleed into the rearview mirror. Two hours on the road in deep contemplation of nothing in particular - certainly nothing important. Two hours that pass in a heartbeat. A sunrise walk along the tracks. A quiet, careful wade down a feeder creek as morning rays begin to filter through the trees. The feeder empties into larger water and I’m on a trout stream once again, watching it come alive. Here early, thanks to the almost forgotten clatter of an alarm clock.

Yeah. It’s been too long since I’ve been trout fishing


14 comments:

Ken G said...

There is something about walking railroad tracks to access points that I'll always find appealing. Quickest way from point A to B.

I need to fish cold water species some day with hills in the background. For now, I have a tough time justifying the two hours and gas burned.

Fontinalis Rising said...

Sounds like a worthy reason to put up with the racket. I don't normally set an alarm either even though I have a regular job now. I really hate alarm clocks. I hope you find some trout.

Rhythm Rider said...

Rising mist, and deeply pondering nothing. Nice. Walking tracks reminds me of that movie Stand By Me.....and trains.

Sanders said...

it's funny how the sound of flowing water can make one forget the jarring blast of the alarm clock...nice to have you back on a trout stream

Steve Zakur said...

There are two rivers I like to fish, each about an hour from home. That hour drive is great for pre-game visualization and daily grind shit shedding.

GRB said...

Reminds me of early morning fishing trips with my grandfather. The thing that I have forever ingrained in the memory is the smell of the river. Clean, earthy river smell. Hope you caught some fish.

Nancy Claeys said...

Beautiful shot -- I trust you found waking up with the roosters worth it. :)

Fly Waters Edge - Kevin said...

Blue sky, sunshine and mist over a cold stream. Prop the rod up, set down on the grassy bank. Hear the king fisher crack the silence and something disturbs the surface just up stream. You reach for the rod, pause and reconsider... it can wait I'm good right here!

Matt Smythe said...

Sitting here, up to my scalp in the undertow of social media...

..I find some fresh air.

Nice post, Mike.

Mike Sepelak said...

Ken, I suspect that our trackside accesses are now frowned upon the the authorities. But I sure like it.

It's pretty much the only reason to put up with it, Jason. Don't you think?

A great movie, RR. One of my favorites.

Glad to be bac, Sanders. Very glad. And you're right - there's nothing more soothing than the sound of running water.

Exactly, Steve. I find the drive to be a recurring theme in my posts, and one you'll read more about soon.

Wonderful recollection, GRB. The smell of the stream is an under-appreciated sensation, as strong as the sound and more effective in stirring those deep memories. A fine observation!

Me and the roosters loved it, Nancy. Loved it.

Beautiful said, Kevin. And spot on. I hate when the fish get in the way. THANKS!

I appreciate it, Matt. DOn't know about fresh air, though. Perhaps hot? :-)

Anonymous said...

I noticed on your fishing log that you listed IC/Oak Island as a fishing hole. Where is this?

Mike Sepelak said...

That's my unique/bizarre shorthand for the intercoastal waterway around Oak Island, south of Wilmington. North Cakalacky Redfish country!

Doug said...

I know where you were. I've scooted down to the trestle pool for my morning "church service' regularly. May the browns be with you.

Mike Sepelak said...

Spot on, Doug. A pleasant way to "worship" the beauty that surrounds you. A mirror into your soul, if you will. I envy your proximity. Thanks for stopping by.