by Randal Sumner
I grew up in Honolulu in the late 60ís, my brother Gary and I were
surf bums, well maybe not bums yet but we had great potential tendencies.
My brother is still a bum but now he has a sailboat, and a fine
collection of Persian tribal rugs. I havenít done so bad either,
but that is not the point; deep or not so deep inside were still
happy bums, and were still hanging around water.
Driving back from the river last week as the sun was setting;
the canyon was an amazing amber tint, artists from what I understand
really go for this kind of stuff. You always hear that the light
on the Cote díAzur in the South of France is special or that high
desert light in New Mexico can make a poet out of a Microsoft engineer.
I try to avoid a lot of deep thoughts, which has been fairly easy
for me but as I drove out through the canyon that evening it did
occur to me what a fine place I was living, and what a good choice
we had made moving back here. Tell me where else we trout bums can
fish year round, and live minutes from the river in a really strange
but interesting town like Yakima? Itís a weird kind of paradise,
and as far as I can tell the light is pretty good too. Have you
noticed driving around town how much the traffic volume seems to
have increased? It seems everyone has a huge SUV and a phone stuck
in the ear. Who are they calling? Are they lonely? This trout bums
is the ugly face of progress. Iím sure you noticed how crowded the
Yakima River was this fall; the weekends were jammed with flat landers
casting their lines with one arm and working the phones with the
other. They must be lonely. Iíve never thought of fishing as a group
activity, its one reason I would never join a fly fishing club,
I distrust organizations and progress, and Iím not that lonely.
Besides I am already involved in a community of trout bums. We never
hold meetings or collect dues or write by-laws, you canít really
join this club but you can be accepted in after a number of years.
Thatís the beauty of this kind of club; nobody cares if theyíre
a member, itís the anti-club club. One last note on progress: once
it arrives there is no going back to the good old days.
My brother is back in Mexico for a couple of months working the
boat in a pair of shorts and a suntan, itís where he belongs. As
for me I am looking foreword to another wonderful cold bleak winter
of trout fishing with a few non-members of a fishing club that doesnít