Either you’ve got it, or you haven’t. Either you’re a fully paid up member of the Adventure, or you’ve wandered into the wrong sport via some improbable and prolonged chain of random events. Let me give you an example of someone who is hooked. I was talking to him just now on the phone (a pal in the tackle trade, into which I doubt he fell by accident either), and the subject was a salmon, a very big salmon, which he caught from the northern Kola’s Kharlovka river a couple of years back.
Steve said that shortly after he hooked it the fish jumped close in and he thought simply: “I’ll never land that.” But thankfully, all went well. The fish was weighed at 38 lb before its return.
Two days later his guide said to him over one of those strangely compelling endless-Kola-sunset aperitifs: “Just imagine what it would have looked like fresh …” . Steve, an experienced angler with well respected fishing qualifications to his name said that’s when it hit him, 36 hours or so later.
High on the adrenaline of fishing that sub-arctic land, and doubtless from joining battle with other magnificent, ball-breaking salmon, it was the first time it had even occurred to him that the fish was showing a bit of colour. The fish was a stupendous trophy, a biggun, a fish of a lifetime and this detail was just not relevant.
And I think that’s brilliant.