Super Sonic + shopping

Fishing

Let's go fishing.

It's dark and cold, winter and windy. There is a random spitting of rain that seems to open from sky, almost cloudless, every hour or so.

But none of it is enough to keep me inside. It's been years since I've been out on the river, on a boat, and my soul seems to be crying for it.

The lap of the water. The smell of ground-in salt and engine grease, the smell of fish but fresh, not the dank smell of fish ships enclosed like crypts in giant suburban shopping centers, their sea life dead days ago.

This is salt and life, birds and fish and bait, all of it rocking with the steady throb of the river, interrupted only by the wake of fishing boats and tinnies, which have been gliding down this stretch of water for so long now that generations of fish and bird life are used to them.

The fishermen, they become as much part of this eco-system as the fish themselves.

It's early, but it feels late. My children are sleeping, under the care of a friend (thank you, Kitten) in my house, when I creep out under the cover of darkness and cold, swaddled in layer upon layer on clothing, a jacket thick as a blanket, beanie coddling my ears from the chill.

A friend of mine- we'll call him The Fisherman, for lack of a better pseudonym- his boat is moored near where my uncle's boat shed used to be, the same part of the river I once fell in, at twelve years old, when a rope swing snapped beneath my feet.

It's so quiet and dark and the surface of the water is like velvet.

There is no moon yet, it's too early for it to rise- I had forgotten moon rises existed, because it's been so long since I've had chance to see one- in the city, the moon just seems to appear, pop up behind a row of houses almost before you realise night has fallen.

And The Fisherman talks quietly to me,in a voice I could listen to for hours, about the river and the water and the people who have been here before us; he shows me how to navigate through red and green markers along the river in the dark, bow of the boat slicing the stillness. He baits lines and casts and we sit and enjoy the night.

The river, lapping gently and rhythmically at the sides of the boat.

There is a noise and the rod is scuttling... I trace the path of a huge, silver fish through the water with a torch, as The Fisherman reels it in.

The light reflects off it's silver scales once it's in the boat. It's called a bream and eyes are huge and they seem to be resigned... wise.

This fish is probably thirty years old, The Fisherman tells me. And it looks it, owl-wise with age and a strange kind of humility. It's mouth opens and closes and it's mesmerizing- sharp teeth, perfectly pink tongue.

I ask The Fisherman, do they feel pain? And he says that 'they'- whoever 'they' are- 'they' say that they don't.

But surely panic?, I ask, or fear?

I don't like to think about it too much, says The Fisherman.

Looking into the eyes of that bream, I can't help it.

The Fisherman releases the fish back into the water, fast and slick as it bullet it disappears into the darkness. I wonder if it knows, juts how lucky it's been.

I think so.

As the moon begins to light the very edge of the black sky, I see a shooting star, one of the only shooting stars I've ever seen. It's huge- fat and luminescent and steaks the sky, low and bright and burning.

I lay back, along the bench of the boat,and stare into the night sky.

Listen to the water. Rhythmically, peacefully, lapping at he sides of the boat.

Begin Again, love, Paradise, random, and more:

Fishing + shopping