It’s been a bit of a mother-in-law year, in that we all want to see the back of it, but we can’t honestly say that we haven’t learned a lot from the last 12 months. This time last year, murmurs of a new contagion once again emanating from behind the great wall were rife, but it wasn’t anything new to be taken seriously…Bird Flu, Swine Flu, hell it might as well have been DonkeyKong Flu for all we cared, ‘another storm in a tea cup’, was the average consensus. If there ever was a lesson to be taken seriously. One can never speak lightly of the tragic human toll, but we’ve all had this hit home and are no doubt unjustly tired of the bad news selling doom and gloom, so as a by no means tongue in cheek perspective, think about the fish it has cost you?

We’re not getting any younger and opportunities to experience the great fishing destinations are far and between, miss your window and you might just fail to open another. Add to this the fact that fish function in their own timezone / season and a few years in lockdown can cost your dearly. Self isolation can also be  a vicious circle, it’s quite easy to get too comfortable connecting to the digital world….you’re reading this after all…..and living vicariously through a screen watching great fishing action just isn’t the same, lest you forget. So get up off your arse and cement some dates with the fishing buddies that you’ve only been engaging with on WhatsApp!

I’m not saying unplug….god forbid… you still need to get the inside track on where the fish are running. But that also presents another dilemma, who the hell do you believe? The era of fake news is upon us! With your digital feed now customised according to your browsing history, algorithms are our new school masters…..Lord help us! If Mr. Make America Great was the unbridled architect who held such sway over the masses, then how on earth are you meant to believe the latest post by any angler. That old adage of all fisherman being liars apart from you and me….and I’m not too sure about you, is the ultimate truism. And that’s why there is no substitute for many fishing friends (real ones, that you’ve actually fished with), for a true fishing buddy will never steer you wrong and it’s also why I like to congregate with them over a wee dram, as I rarely trust a man who doesn’t imbibe in a tipple or two and loose lips don’t really sink ships, but they sure do give away the top fishing spots. Here’s to raising a glass in celebration of your next conquest!