There must be something about older guys named Al. Besides my fishing buddy Al, Theresa and I have informally adopted Al, a 97 year young lifelong resident of Red Bank we met at Foodtown two years ago. Al comes for holidays and birthdays and any time we're having a party. Except for Saturday. We decided our Christmas Open House might be too much for him, so we didn't invite him. If we did we would have picked him up at 430pm. But, with no invite, he ventured across Broad Street from Foodtown and got runned over by a Escalade. He was transported to Jersey Shore in critical condition. This was the third time he was hit by a car at that intersection.
So I was going to visit him today and I decided to break out my stuff and give it a go. Fished from Ocean Grove down to Sea Girt without a tap. Didn't matter. I had fun, somehow wasn't cold in the 27-feels-like-13 degree weather, and my waders didn't leak, at least not that much. Back to Al. After admission he was foggy and out of it. Yesterday and even more so today, alert, oriented, and ready for discharge. Amazing. 98 this January.
Back to the party. My group included some of the fly anglers that I spend a lot of time with either on the beach or in the boat. Two brought over something for the tree, Joe a fly tied ornament, and Paul, well you can see what he brought. Plugs for the boat.......good one Paulie.
I am now done. Comfortable to organize it, see what I need to replace or purchase over the winter, and put it away. I was okay saying I was done last week, but not really. Yesterday's 60 degree day had me wanting to go, but I had more fun at home with the kids, visiting Al, and watching some football.
This winter I will be spending more time in the man cave and on the computer. I'm going to be tying more and going through hard drives to put together a collection of images for an upcoming book that I have been thinking of. There's so many images of fly fishing the Jersey Shore that I think they need to be shared with not only the people I have photographed but for fans of the sport, who are jealous of our landscape, at least they were, and our extended season.