Paulie looked at me in astonishment like I had a booger on my face.
Checking my reflection in a nearby window, I saw that I did actually have a booger on my face, so I wiped it off.
Paulie kept looking at me like I had a booger on my face. This time my reflection was clean. I realised it must have been something I said.
I went back over my last few sentences. Reels are getting rusty? Nope that's not worth any surprise. What about that I haven’t been fishing for two months? Nope, that's unusual but not enough for a booger look. Ah, it must have been that I've lost the urge to go fishing.
Yes now I think about it, that would cause a bit of confusion and shock to Paulie. He's the second keenest fisherman I've ever met after me. Not that I've really met me. If I met me I'm not sure I'd even say hello to myself come to think of it, but you know what I mean.
“You what? You don't want to go fishing?” Paulie's eyebrows climbed onto his hairline like two caterpillars onto a mouldy cabbage. To Paul, I'd just said something completely unbelievable. Like the Maroons were going to lose the Crate of Oranges. Or that Wally was over-rated.
“Mate,” I replied, “I'm just feeling a little bit flat. It's getting into the cold weather, and the thought of climbing into a cold, wet tinny at stupid o'clock isn't getting me going. The odds of me actually catching anything worth keeping, or even worth throwing back are worse than Singo's chances of a kiss at a Waterhouse family barbie. It's not good”.
Paulie kept staring, then shook his head as if he couldn’t believe what he was hearing. “I can't believe what I'm hearing,” he said. I knew he was going to say that.
He blinked and shook his head, as if to clear away an obnoxious memory. “What's going on?” he asked. His eyebrows had climbed back down to where they were supposed to be and had in fact bunched over his eyes like two much shorter caterpillars.
“I wish I knew. I just don't seem to feel like making the effort.”
He ran his tongue over his teeth while he thought. “How long have you felt like this?” he asked, throwing a keen glance at me.
I caught it, and threw it back to him. It hit his shoulder and fell onto the grass. “Well, I don't know,” I said. “Maybe since....”
Since when? I certainly felt like fishing during spring and early summer, when the crabs were going and the jack were smashing livies. I'd been keen through late summer; nailing the odd queenie, and getting amongst some nice prawn. So it must have only been the last month or two when I'd felt like this. And then it occurred to me. My loss of fishing fanaticism lined up with the exact same time I'd had to find some spare cash, and I'd sold my outboard. Of course! I'd lost my motorvation.
Ta da!Reads: 1800