Accordingly I purchased fly fishing tackle for dry fly fishing including dry flies recommended for our area. Since I had not done any such casting before, having only experienced trolling a wet fly behind a row boat in the high lakes of the BC interior, I resolved to practise casting on our lawn. After several weeks of diligent prectise I was pleased with my progress and no longer wrapped the line around my head or snagged myself in the trousers. I could cast a fair length and hit a modestly small target area.
For my benefit the pianist and our children arranged a picnic at a park by the Sooke Rver , a place where trout were known to lurk. Before the meal I donned my wading gear and proceeded out into the stream with my tackle and flies. Resting against a tree in the little park I saw two farmers in coveralls watching me as I cast to and fro with considerable aplomb. I thought that they were probably admiring my technique. After a time I gave up and concluded it was a poor fishing day and my efforts were unrewarded. I repaired to the family for the picnic.
As we started to eat, and the sun prepared to go down, we could see little circles forming in the otherwise smooth flowing surface of the river. Then the farmers took off their coveralls and waded into the river where I had vacated. They cast their flies with practised skill hither and yon and left with several trout each. I set aside romance, finesse, an experience "du jour", aplomb, and my precious sensibilities for the time being, though my family was supportive and the picnic delicious. What I learned again is that in most activity of any sort we enter into, timing is everything, or if not everything, at the least, bloody important.