Gone Fishin' : Fishing season begins not a day too soon
As I recall the conversation, it took place sometime in March. My wife wanted to know when the fish arrived.
I am not sure what prompted the discussion. I might have turned the television set to the Military Channel (where the Nazis were losing again) or to the Outdoor Channel (where a guy with a southern accent was shooting a deer, or a turkey, or a warthog) or simply announced that I was going to make apple crisp at 9 pm at night.
"Honey," she said, standing in the living room with just a hint of exasperation. "When does fishing start?"
I said probably around late April or early May. "That's not soon enough," she said.
Norma had not developed a sudden interest in the sport or the species. What she really wanted to know was when she could count on a distraction that would get me outdoors and out of her way.
I suppose it is the Vineyard version of cabin fever. I get antsy between the end of hunting season and the start of fishing season and think up projects I would normally never want to do.
The fish - a striped bass to be exact - arrived for me Friday night. They arrived several weeks earlier for a number of enthusiastic Island fishermen who are more ambitious than I am about prospecting for the first bass of the season.
I had been hearing about bass along the south shore and at Big Bridge for a week or two. A suggestion from Tom Robinson that we go fishing Friday evening moved me to prepare a fly rod and spinning rod.
My favorite eight-weight fly rod was still rigged with the big white squid fly I had last cast sometime in the fall. A bonito jig was still affixed to the light St. Croix spinning rod I favor for small bass. I never did catch a bonito last season.
I reassured myself that both reels still turned. I tied a new leader to my fly line and told myself I would get around to spooling new line onto my spinning reel. The zippers on my fishing vest had not fared as well as the reels over the winter and were frozen in place
A long soak in warm, soapy water was not persuasive so I brought out the heavy artillery - WD-40 and pliers. That did the trick.