|the only fish I saw|
Some days are better than others. This is such a droll statement that it needs no elaboration.
Some days are like today. They simply exist. They are not good or bad. Nothing got done, nothing got fixed, and the only thing you can say for certain is that a lot of oxygen and carbon had a three-way.
Some days you do far more driving than fishing. There's a simple reason for this. You know for a certainty that no fish are willing to come out and play, that the accesses are still mired in deep snow, and that the gray skies and gray snowbanks are telling you it's not time yet.
Some days you need to go for a drive, be with a friend, talk about fishing and nothing else. Your job, your taxes, your bills and your exes do not exist on such days. The only things that do exist are your friend, the road and the hum of your tires on it, and the ceaseless fuzzy scalp of the landscape punctuated by the vastness of Lake Michigan.
Some days you need to get out and explore, and when you reach that X on the map, the spot you were always wondering about, that blue squiggle writhing through the plat lines, and you realize the whole enterprise is worthless, you still have the satisfaction of having seen it, laying your fantasies to rest against the reality, closure in its purest and most simple and easy sense. What is better than knowing that a map does not live up to your expectations and moving on?
Some days you need a rest, your own Sabbath, a break from all the pressures you are under, to burn some gasoline and have the freedom of the road, to have a friend who doesn't mind if you ramble on aimlessly and absentmindedly all day even while he nods off in the passenger seat. If you're used to talking to yourself anyways this is perfectly acceptable.
Some days are like this one, in which I get to leave behind the bile and filth of my life, the pain and regret, the slavery, insouciance, pop culture, greed, ambition, and the myriad things tugging at my sleeve, and truly escape. Today there was no music and very little fishing, and truthfully no fish at all. There was only me and a good friend, some ideas to chase down, tease out, discover that they were only cotton candy, and to leave the fair grounds disheveled, slightly sick, and sure of the idea we will never eat corn dogs again. When we finally hit shore and landed it was sublime, peaceful despite the carnival. We took local routes. We fished local waters. We caught nothing. We drove home with our heads held high.
Some days are like that.