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How To Go Fishing
by Carol Townsend

I am not much of a one for outdoor hobbies, but  have occasionally been fishing with Himself, when I sit on the riverbank reading, and drinking tea. I never go out on a lake with him however, as he is unwilling to row back to the bank so I can answer a call of nature (Men have their own solutions for this particular problem) For anyone who has never tried fishing, this is what happens:

Having planned your expedition, you have to get your equipment ready the day before as it takes so long, and someone always forgets something, such as the bait. Next day you get up at an obscenely early hour, load up the car, and realising there's no room for the passengers, you have to hire a taxi.

When you eventually reach your destination ( having had to go back for the bait ) you then have to find a good place or "swim" as I believe it's called. This is where the non -fishing folk, like me, need inordinate patience as this is a process which can take many hours while the fisherman walk up and down, down and up, trying to choose between various identical spots and then setting up shed-loads of equipment.

At last everyone is finally settled, and the serious business of staring blankly at the water begins, with the non –fishermen being told to keep quiet or else, and not to say "poor little thing" if by chance someone should catch anything. If you do catch a fish you weigh it, make a note of the weight so you can boast to your friends, photograph it, put it back, and try and catch another one, or the same one  if it's stupid enough.....

I had a little moment of triumph once when Himself asked me to keep an eye on his rod while he kept an appointment behind a bush. I spotted movement as soon as he had disappeared, so did what I'd seen him do a hundred times and yanked the rod upwards as hard as I could. He couldn't believe it.

"You've caught something! How did you know what to do?"

"I just copied what I've seen you do."

"But I've been fishing for years, and you’ve never tried it before!"

It was a two pound carp, maybe not record-breaking, but I was quite pleased with myself.

Himself has never quite got over that day, and will never again make me believe that fishing takes years of practise…..

So the day progresses to the point where it's too dark to see, and with great reluctance you decide to go home. That takes a fair while too, as the taxi has to be hired again (no- one thought to do it in advance) and all the packing up has to be done.

The remainder of the evening  is spent discussing the day's events ad nauseum, and everyone retires to bed, exhausted by all that staring.