From a distance, the boat doesn’t seem big enough to seat two people. Cartoonishly top heavy. It drifts where the water takes it, the occupants unconcerned with their direction and the vagaries of the wide, living river.
Two men sit, legs stretched out before them, heads tilted slightly back, a look of blissful disinterest on their faces. A couple of fishing lines, taut and a little way out into the water. Their day is consumed with the lack of anything in particular.
The sun moves across the sky.
“What have you got in?”
“Got a Woolly Bugger in at the moment”
“Wet little Woolly Bugger”
“Wet and seemingly unattractive….”
A vision of fleshy lips and brilliant scales thrashing on the end of a line flash across their minds.
“…what about you?”
“Thought I’d try a Bunny Leech first, maybe tickle their fancy with a Parachute Adams if all fails”
“I have a good feeling about this afternoon”
“Yep, me too. It is a beautiful day.”
Their eyes watch but their minds wander like tree fluff untethered in the breeze, time allowing thoughts to settle in slow sedimentary layers. No rush. Regular mugs of tea are poured to help mark out the slow passage of time and gaps where conversations might be.
“Did you watch The News last night?”
“I didn’t. I was making these little beauties for today.”
He holds up a fly and studies it with fascination, the sun exploding a bright yellow ball of fluff with a barbed hook protruding from one end.
“They’ve found a new type of Dinosaur. Can you believe that? After all this time, and they’re still pulling up new bones”
“Biggest of the herbivores they reckon.”
He lays the fly gently down in a box next to other intricately weaved enticers that will never catch their prey.
“…mind you, they’re always finding new species of living animals as well. Animals we never knew existed…still.”
“That is true. From the way way back to the way way forward. Evolution never stops”
“We are but a blip along the way”
“Better enjoy the blip”
“It’s our duty I think”
He picks up the flask and takes a peek inside. Empty. Little slaps of water on the side of the boat. A dragonfly darts towards the trees, a drunk on a mission and the sun continues to warm and soften.
“You know, I don’t think there are any fish in this river.”
“As sure as nuts is nuts, there are no fish in this river.”
They think about this unequivocal statement all too briefly. Light on the water dances like notes from a harp.
“Shall we call it a day?”
“Indeed. Our time here is done.”
They move to retrieve and stow their props. The little motor grumbles into life and putters them by inches back to the bank.
“Same time tomorrow?”
They pack their untroubled gear into the car