Today I was thinking about my Dad. He was an excellent fisherman. He was a very capable fly fisherman. He could make that fly dance on the top of the water unlike anyone else I have ever witnessed. We all grew up fishing, but I never remember even trying to fly fish.
Like many sports, the tools are so important. My Dad tied a lot of his own flies. This is a craft that takes time, knowledge, creativity, a sense of color and patience. One of the things that disappeared when my father died was his leather fly book. It was about 8 inches by 5 inches with a zipper that closed all the sides. Inside were pages of felt where the hooks from the flies were secured. I can close my eyes and still see it. I remember some spots of rust where I am sure the ties were put aside still wet from the water.
Fly tying has been around for a long, long time. There are books with old patterns and an accomplished craftsman can tie flies that look very much like the insect they are modeled after. It is like any other meticulous craft – the results are spectacular whether you enjoy fishing or not.
I follow a couple of gentlemen on Instagram who tie flies. They do beautiful work and I found they have similar fond memories of their own fathers. It’s funny the bond you can form with people you don’t know just by having similar experiences or backgrounds.
Wednesday was my brother’s birthday. He is a year and a half older than me. He learned to fly fish at a very young age as evidenced by the photo that follows. That fly rod is at least three if not four times bigger than he is!
Did you know that fly fishing is good therapy for breast cancer surgery recovery? It helps rebuild strength otherwise lost in the arm and chest after surgery. Pretty cool, isn’t it? Casting for Recovery is an organization that provides such opportunities for breast cancer survivors. You can donate to help if you are called to do so.
That’s where my mind has been today. Good memories. I just wonder what happened to my Dad’s fly book?