Recently it was Memorial day. And it was awesome to bring the kiddo's out to my folks to take part in the very small town (only about 900 people live in this, the 3rd largest town - by land area - in Ma) "parade" in honor of those who have served, and those who have lost their life in support of our country. I remember doing this parade, walking from cemetery to cemetery to listen to Taps played - often by a lone bugle off in the forest near by. Haunting, respectful, and a powerful memory.
The parade has changed a lot. The majority of the "old" guard in town are gone now, either unable to attend, or no longer with us. The younger generation are trying to take over valiantly... It's changed though. Some kid's go to school of choice and thus their families go to their school community parade, there are fewer folks able to attend in general... In short, it's still awesome, but it struck us this year how things change.
Emily enjoyed standing on a quiet section of the common away from the action doing flips with mommy while Will had fun telling "Mia" about the moss and lichen on that beautiful big sugar maple. We got to talk to several friends and enjoy a really good visit with my home town. I would love to live there, though I dont know that it's really possible at this point... It will most likely be my favorite hiking, fishing, hunting, mountain biking and relaxing place through my life... Living someplace the first 26 years of your life, exploring it non stop and spending hours with it's forests, waters and people will do that to you. Amazing to think I've not lived there in 14 years now!
Back at home, I took a few minutes to go fish a section of the stream I discussed in my last post. It's such a cool spot... This section is surrounded mostly by open hardwoods with some tangling honey suckle, grape or multiflora in the more open spots. The fish greatly enjoyed a yellow minimuddler (thanks Mark at http://fishingsmallstreams.blogspot.com/ for bringing that pattern to my attention a few years ago). I modify this fly slightly using an orange floss body... because hey, what wild fish does NOT like orange :) It's such a simple fly the "muddler family". Fish em dry casting up stream or up and across... and instead of casting again when they reach the end of a drag free drift, give em a tug, let them dive, and swing them through the current... Perfect simplicity for the late spring and summer small stream angler - a dry/wet/streamer in one!
This stream is open now - top to bottom. Fish can make it the whole length of it's flow at this point thanks to the recent dam removal a few miles down stream from here... Exciting times on this little flow!