Hit the road Jake: Long way out

Hit the road Jake: Long way out | Hammer Tackle

Clutched with an icy fist
Sealed the horizon
No breeze will carry me
The birds' lonely song

It's the end of March, I'm sitting in the warm living room with a coffee and looking thoughtfully at the rainy streets. My eyes reflect a world that appears cold, wet, and even completely inhospitable. It always shocks me when I realize how long this melancholy has lasted. Since November, life has been characterized by restrictions, a deficit in social interaction and limited freedom of movement. I didn't even get to know other students during the semester, which took place entirely online. The warmth of the living room almost bothers me, as it radiates a comfort that I search in vain for within myself. How much longer are we expected to convince ourselves that online lessons are a serious alternative to studying? That you can also maintain social contacts via Skype and that online dating is “the way to go”? Fear hangs in the air everywhere. Talking about this then seems fatal to me. Nevertheless, I notice it everywhere, including myself. Not being able to live up to your own potential is torture...

Every few days the sun peeks out from between the clouds and lets me forget this crazy world for a few hours. I can convert frustration into strength on the rock and breathe deeply on the water. Being outside is like healing for me, without it I would probably go crazy. Every minute that I spend in peace in nature shows me what is actually important to me. The attitude to life, the freedom, the sporting ambition, the immersion in a world beneath the surface, a world that is not based on the madness of people.

Days pass, weeks pass, spring is approaching. On one of the first warm days I decide to explore the surroundings. Although it was rainy and windy before, today the sun is shining after a frosty morning and puts a smile on my face. Birds chirp, floral scents float through the air, a T-shirt is enough in the sun. I breathe in the fresh air deeply, what a relief after all the gloomy hours. I feel light, dance on the narrow paths along the water and enjoy my vitality.

I fight my way through the bushes at a small quarry pond, crystal clear and surrounded by tall apartment blocks. I actually spot a scaled carp in the thick woods. I'm immediately there with a can of corn. I quickly add a handful of food to a few places and wait anxiously. A little later my heart beats in my throat because around eight different carp take turns eating on one of the small feeding stations. The only problem: There are so many branches sticking out into the water that I would only be able to dip the landing net into the water with great difficulty. No matter, this has to work now. With shaking hands, I let the corn kernels sink down on a free line and hold my breath.

It takes a few minutes and then the place is busy eating again. The carp clean the place empty, grain by grain. Suddenly everything happens very quickly. One of the smaller scalers shoots forward and inhales my hookbait. The stop is in place and with all my strength I pull the boat into the landing net. Finally, the first one for this year. I couldn't have asked for a better way to catch him. Overjoyed, I jump for joy and let the nut-brown scale swim again after a few pictures.

Two days later I drove to my friend Moritz in the beautiful town of Görlitz. Here a small, picturesque river forms the border with Poland. Of course I had to give it a try. I arrived late in the evening after a three hour drive. I quickly spread my two rods in the backwater above a weir, fed a large hand of halved boilies and lay on my ear. As I fell asleep, I imagined how nice it would be to be woken up by a beautiful mirror around 8:30 a.m. No, I don't want to have such expectations, I said to myself and fell asleep, exhausted. The night was quiet and with the rising sun I was on my feet again. I marveled at the surroundings in a good mood, as a huge viaduct crosses the river just a short distance upstream. What a fantastic setting.

With the sun on my face, I lie down on the lounger and gradually doze off again to the sound of birdsong. It was just before nine when out of nowhere a merciless run caused my morning dreaminess to evaporate. A little disbelieving, because I wasn't expecting a bite, I drill my angry opponent with my knees shaking. Shortly before the landing net I realize that the carp that I hadn't allowed myself to dream about yesterday is actually hanging on the hook. Crazy !!

A short time later Moritz arrived and we celebrated the fish. Coffee flowed in such streams that we scurried through world events for the rest of the day with uncontrollable energy. The little dream of the perfect picture in front of the viaduct was of course fulfilled and the big grin never left my face. What a brilliant morning after such a long, cold winter...

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