Fly fishing in Austria

Man and woman standing in creek, both wearing waders, holding fishing poles.

Woman: Oh, he’s a big fella.

Man: Where? Oh, he’s big.

The big fella swims deep, nosing the gravel of the creek bed with singular concentration.

Most of the time, that’s his whole world: gravel.

Man: What’s he looking for?

Woman: Periwinkles? May-flies?

Gravel, gravel, gravel. Rarely, something shiny or something bright catches the big fella’s eye and he leaves the creek bed and swims to the surface and there’s a small splash and a dragonfly disappears, or sometimes a lure of chrome or polished brass.

Incomplete list of shiny things that have caught the big fella’s attention:

  • The phrase “better to stay silent and be thought a fool than to speak up and remove all doubt” (as a child);
  • The idea of going through life without leaving any footprints (as an older child);
  • Young woman in blue shirt eating a banana in a cafeteria (back in college);
  • Falling stars;
  • Heat lightning;
  • Fireflies;
  • Certain people;
  • The phrase, “as you live your days so do you live your life” (somewhat recently);
  • The phrase, “your problem is you think you have time” (more recently)

Man: Where’d he go?

Woman: Into that shady pool, I think.



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