I was fishing with Shawn Brillon, Bob Mead, and Paul Ptalis. We were jaw-jacking and laughing more than fishing, a wonderful day in all the ways that matter. Foremost in my memory is a respectable brown that Paul took on a greased Hornberg. I suppose you had to be there, but watching that fish fall all over itself while trying to engulf Paul’s skating streamer … well … it was absolutely hysterical.
The day stands out in my memory as it was the last time the four of us fished together. Paul passed away last November, after losing a prolonged battle with cancer. He was a talented fisherman, a transcendent tyer of Atlantic salmon flies, a patient tutor, and a good man. Today, as autumn gave up its ghost, I couldn’t help but think of Paul and his fish.
I suppose the day will come when my friends will reminisce about the time they spent on the water with me. If I’m very lucky, they’ll remember how much I appreciated the river and my time with them.
I hope that memory makes them smile as much as I did today.
Here, you’ll find a video of Paul releasing his Hornberg fish.Here, you'll find the American Cancer Society.