There’s a big picture that hangs in my office of a gorgeous chimpanzee. I think it may actually be an original oil painting. Now the point here isn’t that it’s pretty or unique or odd or that it’s a chimp staring at me on my office wall. The point is it keeps me grounded.
One indisputable fact of life is that as we get older we tend to get wiser. Or at least we learn from mistakes and many experiences that we were fortunate, and sometimes unfortunate enough, to have been involved in.
I’m sure I’m not the oldest guy you know, but I can assure you I’m catching up on him or her pretty fast. And I really do believe I’m a lot wiser and perhaps a bit more cautious about things that I see occurring now days. At my age I can do a much better job of putting life in perspective. At least for me.
My chimp reminds me that no matter how special or how good lookin’ we may think we are, no matter how well off we think we are or how successful we’ve been in life, we will always be surprised at what we didn’t do or what we didn’t achieve. And that’s not bad. But, you need something to ground you. Something to say, “Hey, you had some great fun and lived some great experiences.”
I have been a fisherman almost my entire life. And I have been blessed to have had some great experiences and caught some awesome fish. I’ve been fortunate enough to travel to some spectacular fishing venues and made some wonderful new acquaintances who have remained great friends to this day. But you know what? Anything I’ve done or experienced has always been “trumped” by someone else or some new and exotic experience. So my chimp reminds me to focus on my life – not woulda’, coulda’ or shoulda’.
When I look at this picture of my chimp buddy he (or she) seems so content. He’s the master of his world. He’s surrounded by lush foliage and just seems to be contemplating life and what he has achieved and discovered. It’s doubtful that he is distracted by other’s adventures or achievements. I like that.
I have no doubt that he’s happy and is perfectly content to be where he is and live the life he’s in. I suspect every day is an adventure and imagine that when he wakes up each morning he’s encouraged by his surroundings and life’s possibilities for the new day.
So I try to be like him. I don’t take things too seriously. I know life is an adventure. I try not to stress over the little things. If I can’t get that new rod or reel the very moment I think I need it that’s OK. If I miss a bite from a monster or get broken off, hey, it is what it is. I think it’s called “life”.
Being in the fishing business, you would think it would be euphoria for an avid fisherman such as myself. And I must admit it is. But even with some great “latest and greatest” gear, friends to accompany me to exotic locations and great food and camaraderie, there are those of us who still stress about missed fish, late dinner, poor guides, you name it. Fortunately age (and my chimp) have a way of putting this in perspective. A very good way.
Most of you have had a tough winter so far. It’s been bitter cold with wind and snow and just crummy outside. But you know what? This too shall pass. The tougher winter is the more we will enjoy those rare warm snaps. And spring will seem like one of nature’s most fantastic events. I’m sure my chimp buddy feels the same way.
So here I am in the dead of winter, frankly freezing my ass off and more often than I would like to admit walking around with a gray cloud over my head. But all I need do is simply look up from my desk at my beautiful, optimistic, contented chimp and it all seems OK.
Farmer’s Almanac says this winter will be long and cold. But you know what? I don’t care. I’ve found my optimism. I’m getting my fishing gear ready, swapping in some reels, spending time researching new techniques and baits, and rearranging my tackle so when the weather does break I can take full advantage of every second. The more the weather beats me up the more I know I will appreciate the warm breezes and longer days when they come. Just like my chimp buddy on my office wall.
This issue we have some great deals to pass along to you. The Daiwa Tatula has been a hot seller and can be had for a heck of a price in the Type R model for the next week. We also have a smokin’ deal on the Daiwa Cielo rods so be sure and give them a look.
Thank you for your wonderful friendship and support. All of us here at American Legacy Fishing truly appreciate your continued loyalty and support. We feel we are so fortunate to have so many friends who share our joy and obsession with one of the world’s greatest sports. Thank you once again for all you do!