Friday, 1 March 2019

Fishing Tales.

Fishing  is another pastime frequented by all different kinds of people.  You get the small kid who just wants to catch a fishy on the lishy.  He is happy catching sticklebacks and sharing his mum’s sandwiches with the local wildlife. Then there is the trout fisherman who only uses the fly and disapproves at the common Coarse fishing angler.   Trout man spends all his time trying to imitate a May fly and thinking of interesting tweed jackets.   He is often seen at a private stocked troutery, fishing for Triploids (had their sex organs electrically removed so they resemble bullocks) that  have had about two dustbins of trout pellets a second.  Trout man is really chuffed when he catches one of the Leviathans and proudly shows off his catch!
I spent a lot of my youth and early adulthood Coarse fishing.  Every stream, flooded quarry, canal, mill pond, river, reservoir and lodge was fished.  All just so that I could catch a fish and let it go again.  
Oh what joy it was to look down at your maggot box and see a big brown rat eating the bran.  I am terrified of rats (shit scared) and they soon helped me pack up my tackle and run home!  I think my rat phobia goes back to my childhood. 
I once went out the back street one winter’s night in my stocking feet to let my beloved dog Tess back in after her ablutions and a good bark.  A great big greasy looking sewer rat type very kindly decided to walk over my feet.  I turned and fled and unofficially broke the world 100 metres record.  
Anyway I digress.  I spent many a happy and not so happy time fishing.  I enjoyed my time sitting fishing with a keep net full of Thwaites beer and half bottle of whisky to keep me warm.
 I can recall breaking ice with a stone and spending TWO hours shivering and feeling sorry for myself.  I never caught anything but what’s better than a bit of hypothermia now again.  I met a few anoraks on my fishing adventures.  I often  remember the one man and his dog that would stand behind you watching your float for about five minutes.  Then they would say:
 “Have you caught out (anything) mate.” 
I would reply yes or no and they would shrug their shoulders and walk off.  Thanks a lot Mr dog walker for standing behind me and sending me paranoid.  Oh the times I used to think some mass murderer was going to kill me and make me into their dog: Rover’s dog food. 
One time I joined a local fishing society.  I walked the two miles to my new fishing paradise and began to assemble my fishing rod.  A friendly neighbouring angler fishing on the opposite peg greeted me by saying:
 “Get to f*ck off there.  You’re not fishing on my peg”. 
I looked in front of my peg (a prostrate wooden pallet, precariously hanging over the water) and noticed the “friendly Fishermans” float.   I tried to protest that I was only fishing on a vacant peg and he threatened to give me good hiding. 
I was only 16 and he was about forty.   Friendly fisherman was built like the proverbial brick shit house, and his cat had obviously urinated on their corn flakes that very morning.   So I picked up my tackle and left “friendly angler” to his half of the fishing lodge. 
There is another kind of angler fisherman.  He is the fisherman who spends all his or her time (most women aren’t so stupid) thinking they will catch the biggest carp, cat fish or pike in the world. 
 Big fisherman  spends all its money and time drooling over pictures of big fish (there is another creature that drools over big women) and spending its money on a trip to Saint Lake Cassin in France.  The Loch Ness monsters relatives live in the depths of the lake.  Big Fishermans wife is a fishing widow and dreams of spending a week in a static caravan in Skegness. 
I used to like doing a bit of fishing.  I would fill my keep net with eight cans of Thwaites bitter and lie on the canal towpath for the afternoon.  I didn’t usually catch anything,  but I always got a tan and pleasantly drunk.


  1. Never did any fishing myself, but my Mum and Dad used to put trot lines out on the Sheerness mud flats at low tide, wait for the tide to come in and go out again, then go and harvest any fish caught on the trot line bait hooks. Cod, plaice, those were the most caught fish and of a good size as well. My Dad also used to fish with a hook and line from the beach. The rolling waves, the brisk onshore winds, ....these I remember well!

    I do remember going crab hunting but that doesn't count I think!

  2. Thanks for your comment Vera. I have been thinking about making a fishing pond here for a while. I grew up reading the Mr Crabtree goes fishing newspaper cartoons and I had the books. You should write blogs about your seaside memories. They are really good reminiscences. Thanks!

  3. Living in a town with no ponds or lakes didn't help a desire to go fishing and by the time I was old enough to travel the idea of sitting on a bank with rods and nets in an ever hopeful mood eluded me. I do remember 'going fishing' with friends but all I could do was watch and you can imagine my mood when I wasn't even given a go!! Heehee!

  4. Hi Valerie. Fishing can be boring when the fish aren't biting or nobody will let you have a go. I miss my coarse fishing days. Perhaps I should take it up again? Thanks!

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