Thursday, May 14, 2020
Six of the things I have learned during the Coronavirus...
By Bill Prater
1. I have discovered Linda can sit in silence for hours, happily knitting away, while I telepathically anticipate her inevitable next few words. Sounds impressive, until you remember we have been in blissful binary confinement for the past two months. There is just not much variation in our daily conversations; the sight of a familiar squirrel in the backyard can trigger dramatic new dialogue for hours. As I was saying, Linda can utter three simple words and I can tell you everything else that she is about to say. (The three you have to watch out for are: “Would you mind...?”)
2. Also, I have discovered Linda can sit in silence sit for hours, happily knitting away… And remain just as happy when she “drops a stitch” and has to pull apart the last 20 rows of the scarf she began when this cursed pandemic began.
3. Meanwhile, I can also sit in silence for hours (or at least just curse under my breath), as I struggle to perfect the notoriously tricky double uni knot to connect microscopic 4-pound braided fishing line to even tinier 4-pound fluorocarbon leader. (I’ve now given up on attaching 2-pound line as a challenge for much younger eyes. And trust me on this, tying knots in 6- or 8-pound braid is too easy to distract a bored homebound angler for very long. (I have, however, given up on Youtube explanations of the intricate, mysterious “FG knot.”)
4. Throughout the quarantine, from High Country ice-out through early spring, I have managed to keep my wintertime sanity intact by continuing to fish. In virtual solitary confinement, of course, under pretty much all weather conditions known to humankind. In the process, I have learned there is a fine line (it falls somewhere between 28 and 30 degrees Fahrenheit), between one’s ability to bravely cast into the teeth of a 30 mph breeze, and reluctantly quitting with an old man’s cramps in one’s casting hand.
5. I have simultaneously learned there is a tiny pond near the house that is home to at least three little bass who are occasional suckers for a meticulously presented green pumpkin Ned Rig. Maybe more! You just have to be patient enough to fish for them long enough, and often enough, to entice them into taking a bite.
6. I’ve got time.