654 days – thats how long it is since I last updated this blog.
654 days is also how long it takes to do the following:
- Join a local carp syndicate.
- Catch my first 20lb carp.
- Catch loads more 20lb + carp.
- Almost go bankrupt.
- Catch a 30lb carp.
- Catch loads more 30lb + carp.
- Get bored with carp fishing
- Take up match fishing (for the second time)
- Frame in a match (and win some cash).
- Get bored with match fishing.
- Change jobs.
- Suddenly realise how much I miss fishing.
- Equally suddenly realise how much I NEED fishing.
- Start writing my blog again.
So I joined a Carp syndicate. Nothing fancy or expensive – just a 6.5 acre farm lake about 2 or 3 miles from home. 50 members, plenty of fish over 20lb and a few 30s, topping out at about 38lb pre spawning.
It’s a friendly little place and nice and peaceful to boot, so I paid my subs and instantly became a SERIOUS CARP ANGLER.
On my first ever visit I caught a 7 1/2lb Tench and two bin-lid Bream.
A few more visits and I was starting to catch more regularly and then a quiet spell came – 5 blanks in a row. A few visits to Owls Castle (carp soup) to boost the confidence and on returning to the syndicate I bagged my first 20. To be more precise it was a common of 25lb 12oz known as Hook, probably due to the shape of its dorsal fin.
The following weekend saw a couple more similar sized fish – firstly another common known as The Mug
Next was a lovely old mirror, apparently one of the original fish. It had an absolute paddle of a tail, so I felt it necessary to give it a moody ‘stare at the fishes arse end’ type look. As if that wasn’t enough I couldn’t resist adding some weird filter effect to the picture on my ‘phone.
Also, as ‘A SERIOUS CARP ANGLER’ I felt it permissible to hold the fish as far away from myself as possible without snapping my wrists.
Still, despite my ridiculous attempts to look carpy it IS a pretty fish.
Amidst all this excellent carpy going on things were not looking so god on the work front.
A client going bust owing me thousands and one of my regular builder clients shutting up shop had a serious effect on the business. Being a one – man – band joiner is a lovely job, but financially it was becoming untenable.
Suffice it to say that it was touch and go for several months, with the business getting perilously close to going down in flames.
Winter arrived, the business lurched on and the nights were getting cold – too cold for a fat unfit old git like me to really enjoy the overnighters.
I decided it was best to focus on something a bit different and dragged out the match fishing gear. I spent most of the winter catching loads of match Carp (up to 15lb or so) from the local club lakes on light tackle.
Come the Spring I felt confident enough to take part in some of the club matches, mostly on home ground with a few visits to local commies. The culmination of my brief Match Fishing career was coming second in my section and pocketing £15.
I’d like to say at this point that I was spurred on by this minor triumph, and that I honed my game and am now competing regularly.
Nope. I actually found it quite boring just fishing to win. I still enjoy fishing off the box ‘match style’, but generally speaking I’m happier doing it solo, rather than worrying about what everyone is catching.
With business still bumping along the bottom I decided that it was time for a change.
I took a SMSTS course, along with a First Aid at work course and started sending out CVs to agencies looking for work as an Assistant Site Manager. To cut a long story short I started on a site as a freelance ASM building an apartment block.
Finally, regular income (and pretty reasonable too!!) and regular hours. The downside is the appalling quality of workmanship I have to accept and the mind blowing bigotry, racism, misogyny and aggression that infects the site.
I’ve been involved in construction for most of adult life, and I’m no lightweight ‘snowflake’ when it comes to the general ‘tone’ of construction sites, but this place is next level.
But it pays the bills.
So through this period fishing took a back seat and now I’ve realised that I REALLY miss my fishing, whatever shape or form it takes.
More to the point I’ve also realised how much I NEED my fishing. It helps me de-compress. re-evaluate, chill out, doze off dribbling onto my t-shirt, etc etc. Probably the same reason most of us do it.
So come Sunday I’m heading back to Gedges Lake 4, the venue of my last post exactly 654 days or 1.79178 years ago.