15 May 2017 (Monday) - A Day's Fishing

I had a rather good night’s sleep; waking a little later than usual. Over brekkie I watched an old episode of “Dad’s Army” before having my usual morning look at the Internet.
I read something which frankly amazed me on Facebook. There is someone on my Facebook friends list; like most people on that list he is hardly a friend; just someone I know. Like a *lot* of people I know one of his parents has recently died. We’ve been there in the last couple of months; it is not good. But what amazed me was this chap was using Facebook to try to crowd-fund his mother’s funeral.
At the risk of giving offence here, don’t people make arrangements for when the inevitable happens? It didn’t take me more than a minute to come up with this website which shows that the average cost of dropping dead in the south of England is about eight thousand quid. It is bad enough that your children are going to be distraught (they better be!) without saddling them with eight thousand pounds worth of debt. And that’s without giving all the mourners a drinkie. Realistically I’m over half way through this game of life, and so I’ve taken out insurance to stump up for when my number is up. Doesn’t everyone of a certain age?

I went to the co-op to get a sandwich for lunch. The people in the co-op were giving away flowers. Bunches of flowers which cost four quid yesterday were free today as they’d gone past their sell-by date. Can you believe it? Flowers have a sell-by date!
I got some as something for nothing is always good.
I then drove round to collect "My Boy TM". Usually we’d go for a fry-up but today we had to drop Lacey at school after brekkie and she had no truck with the workman’s cafes where we’d usually go. But (to keep her old Grandad happy) she agreed to having a McBreakfast.
McBreakfast was good; I like McDonalds – you get people from all walks of life in there. There were retired couples, businessmen in suits, workmen, schoolkids as well as us. All enjoying a sausage and egg McMuffin.

We dropped Lacey at school, and we went on to Shirkoak for a day’s fishing. We drove through the rain, and set up in the rain. The rain was a feature for the morning; it finally stopped about 2pm. But we didn’t get *that* wet. We arrived to find one of the normal people already fishing, but after half an hour he made some lame excuse and went home.
Fishing-wise we then had the lake to ourselves for the rest of the day, but we did have two sets of people coming round who had heard about the place and had come for a look-see.
There was a minor dilemma in the early evening. For much of the day we’d been watching a mother duck swimming about with a single baby following her. Shortly after 5pm the baby came paddling about on his own; plaintively chirping for his mother. Mother was nowhere to be seen, and one of the other ducks was obviously picking on the baby. We managed to distract the bully with fishing bait, but we were rather worried about the baby. There wasn’t really anything we could do to help, but that didn’t stop us worrying. After about twenty minutes of rather pathetic chirping from the littlun,  the mother duck appeared in the sky and dropped into the pond in much the same way that a brick would. There was a rather heart-warming reunion, and mother and baby swam off together (to our relief).

Fishing-wise the day was busy. Not as busy as it has been at Shirkoak on some days, but certainly busier than the last time we went. "My Boy TM" made a point of counting how many fish he caught but he lost count at forty which was some time in the early afternoon. I didn’t catch as many as he did, but I would estimate I had between forty and fifty carp, averaging a couple of pounds (in weight) each.
My biggest fish of the day was about five and a half pounds in weight, the first fruit of my loin had one which was about a pound heavier. We’ve been fishing this lake on and off for some time now; we don’t seem to catch anything any bigger than six pounds in weight. But when "My Boy TM" was young he would regularly catch fish up to twenty pounds in weight from this lake, I wonder what’s been going on – do fish shrink?

I took a few photos whilst we fished, and we even made a video of our exploits. If you like fishing, the video will just fly by. If you don’t like fishing the video will be like watching paint dry. But it does feature me rather prominently so time spent watching it won’t be wasted (if you like that sort of thing).

I think that I might have strained my elbow with all the fish I caught…

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