I was somewhat happy and relieved when our flight touched down at 10am yesterday morning, albeit I then felt like a bit of an idiot when I wandered out of terminal 5 dressed in shorts and a t-shirt. When I go somewhere warm like I have just been I don't usually bother even taking a pair of trousers with me - which sometimes ends up biting me in the rear of course.
Timings just about worked out yesterday so that I could pick my girls up from school in the afternoon. Sunny Torpoint it might not have been, but any of you with a wife and kids will know all about the sheer joy at seeing them again after a bit of time away. Inside the front door, light the wood burning stove, quickly find a pair of jeans and a fleece and then we were out the door to take Storm for a walk. Family, home and dog - what could be any better than that ?
It's usually not until I get home that I can get some distance from a trip and start to analyse how it went. I don't know much about how other fishing writers/photographers work, but with a trip like the one I have just done to Brazil, as amazing and out of this world as it might have been, I have to make a living just as you lot do - and until I have processed the shoot, pushed the material out there to try and sell some features, then written these (potential, nothing remotely guaranteed with either the fishing or the selling of the material) features and then get paid for them (after publication) I have in essence lost a lot of time (which I don't get paid for on a trip like that) and a certain amount of money. But it's a part of what I do and I can usually make it work out.
Of course I balance out this element of risk with continually building a photo library that is handy to have for future work (books, catalogues etc.), and as much as work is work and we must be clinical about certain aspects of it, I still believe that I am incredibly fortunate to see the stuff that I do and that life enhancing side of it to me is incalculably valuable in a completely non-money sense - if indeed that makes any sense ?
Now here's a first for this blog - Henry Gilbey's shopping advice, and this is coming from somebody who despises going shopping with a passion - ok, so I like shopping for fishing gear (surprise) and also for clothes for my two girls, but otherwise I have a suspicion that the internet was actually invented for men who can't handle shops (like me). If any of you are passing through Miami and have some time to kill then jump on the Dolphin Mall shuttle bus (details/times here) and head off to the massive Bass Pro that just happens to be at one end of the mall.
Never been to a Bass Pro shop ? Think "supermarket of fishing gear and fishing clothing etc." - they are huge, they sell nearly everything to do with fishing that you could possibly think of and they are awesome !! You can end up spending hours in a Bass Pro shop and at the huge Dolphin Mall there is also some great shopping for kids' clothes (Old Navy, Osh Kosh etc.), and anything else you could think of, but then the rest of it ain't remotely for me. Is it sad that a bloke like me loves buying his girls clothes, or is it perfectly normal ?
A rather kind person emailed me to say that he loves reading this blog but that perhaps I should look at breaking up the rather large chunks of text I sometimes spew forth into more easily readable paragraphs, so I am trying it for a while to see how it goes - if it's better (or indeed worse) as a reading experience then please could you give me a few thoughts, and in the meantime I am going to get on with processing this huge Brazil photo shoot and catching up with various work related stuff - while wishing that it was as lovely and warm here as it was in Brazil and Miami................