It's been 13 days and we still have no power here at the homestead. We got tired of living with others, so yesterday we borrowed a 9000W generator from a friend that has power now, and our friend and electrician Andy Miller hooked it up to our service. The furnace works, hot water, fridge, lights - just no stove or microwave oven. We are powered and living at home again! We're doing fine, just a little inconvenienced.
Yesterday I spent the afternoon at the One Fly Angler of the Year Contest that preceded the 2012 NJ State TU Council Banquet. It was a nice afternoon and lots of guys showed to watch and cheer on the contestants from the bank of the river. In the end, during the final round, with a minute to go, one of the three anglers hooked and landed a beautiful brown trout of about 17 inches long. It was the only fish of the round, and again, just as last year, Angelo Conti pulled it out at the last minute, literally! Congrats to the two-time winner.
The banquet last night was fun with good food, and great conversation. The winner of the fly tying contest was Pete Romano, and again this year, Bart Lombardo won the fly casting contest. Congrats to Pete and Bart. And finally, as the keynote speaker, I poked some fun at all of us fly fishers and then spoke about some of my history of getting into hot water for fishing when I was supposed to be elsewhere, which segued into how Trout Unlimited came along, chapters sprouted and brought us all together to share days like we had yesterday - a few precious hours with like-minded folks away from the daily rigors and stresses of our regular lives. For me, and I think for all of us there last night, it is one of the most fulfilling parts of our lives - the fishing, the meetings, the conservation activities, the friends. I may not have power, but I had a great day and evening thanks to Trout Unlimited. Slainte!
And now, I am going fishing. It's 62 degrees, sunny and the river is calling. Report later.
Sharpen your hooks!