When in Rome…
  |  First Published: August 2015

So I have to go overseas on a trip. To Italy of all places. Now this has got me a little worked up, for a number of reasons.

Firstly, I've never been there before. So it's a bit like heading across to a new fishing hole that you've not fished before. There are all the questions that you need to address while you're packing, because unlike a trip to a new hole with the Dudds, you can't throw the extra gear into the back of Skipper’s Challenger. And you really only throw your gear into the back of Skipper’s Challenger when you're ok with it not arriving given the breakdown rate, and also the issue of arrival time. Skipper tends to make sure everything is wrapped strapped and packed right, with the result that he starts to get ready a fortnight or two before us, and arrives two three days into the trip, trailing various straps and buckles, minus a good third of his gear and plus the odd speeding ticket. Don't ask how he gets them when the beast doesn't do more than 80km down the Toowoomba range but it happens. So I have to be more careful about my gear selection.

Secondly, wherever I've been in sunny Queensland, I've been able to chuck in a rod, or a handline or at least a couple of lures, hooks and sinkers, but apparently you can't do that when you go overseas. Why I don't know because I'd assume at least half of this part of the world would stow a Calcutta with some 30lb braid into their bag, in case they wander past a good waterhole in Italy. Apparently not.

And I've just been checking the atlas out, the old one that used to come with the World Book Encyclopedia. I got it cheap from this Italian bloke lives up the road. Fifty bucks. Score. Boom. He doesn't know they sold for nearly twice that when they were printed back in the 70s. Imagine what they're worth now. Anyway, if these Italians are that much behind the times, I'm set.

But I'm worried about the fishing. I can't take a rod, and I don't know where to fish. Maybe this Coliseum place I keep hearing about has a few barra or jack sitting around ready to smash a livey. Or another place called St. Peters. But I know I won't be going anywhere near the Dead Sea. I'm already a Dudd. I don't need more help to catch nothing.

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