Thursday, 24 November 2011

In honour of the humble worm.

The other day I happened across a small red book which had been languishing upon a shelf for quite some time. It had come to me amongst a pile of other books which had been handed down to me by another angler. I am not sure why it has taken me so long to peruse its pages - maybe because others filled with mythical stories and pictures of unobtainable fish have distracted me - but once I opened it and read one single verse I was hooked like a hungry fish! It is a compendium of writings and accounts by different authors and is compiled by a man who only refers to himself as BB. The stories held within in it's pages are nothing short of inspiring no matter how trivial a subject they be about.

As I contemplated in that place only a man contemplates, I read a short verse in dedication to the humble worm. Descriptions of every one of our native worms that an angler may be interested in are followed by detailed methods for collection and storage. This proved enough of an inspiration for me go out and obtain for myself a load of worms from the local bait purveyor and head down to my favourite perch patch to see if that now the weather had settled on cold they wanted to come out to play.

Stepping onto the tow path with enough fresh worms to prize out half the perch in Warwickshire I was in a good mood. There was no breeze to contend with, the air was full of mist and above it all the cloud blocked the suns bright rays. It all seemed just right for once.

Puréeing handfulls of worms into a lumpy soup may seem to most a poor pastime for seven o'clock on Sunday morning but quite honestly there is no better way to attract a hungry perch or two. Although I had to wait for them to arrive for a good hour or so, the first perch was more than worth it.


Oddly that two pounder was the only one to turn up to the party at my first stop of the morning so I moved on to another useful spot to repeat the same process. Again it took a good while for the magic ambrosia to take effect but it did in the end bring the fish in, where my almost free lined patented double half a lob worm snagged a couple more fine perch as it sank attractively onto the bottom.

I decided to try one more area before I left and spent an hour or so fishing close to the car. The sky had now cleared and sunlight was illuminating the water but contrary to popular belief the fish became a little more keen in the brighter conditions. Maybe visibility improved slightly, but a late slew of pounder's snatched more bait as it settled in the water and every one was hooked in exactly the same place.

With my time spent well for once I began to slowly pack away my kit just as a couple came walking past. They stopped to ask if I had been successful in my piscatorial endeavours and just as I casually replied, I squatted down awkwardly in front on the edge of the tow path to pick up a bank stick and heard that most embarrassing noise ever.


I knew what that was! It was the gusset of my trusty thermal troos going for a Burton.

They left snickering and so did I with a face redder than a perch's tail.

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