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Fishing on the Oreti one summery day

October 26, 2010

The lower Oreti River, Southland

My vegie plants are slumping in the heat and we’d just purchased a ‘family’ fishing license. Into the car we go, in the late afternoon, with a picnic, to the Oreti River.

I am no fisherman, fisher or otherwise. I have never caught a fish. I like to eat fish, yes. But the thought of repeatedly casting a lure/bait and winding it back in does not fill me with joy and excitement. I’d rather sit down by the side of a river with a good book. I agreed to the family fishing licence -about an extra $30 more than an individual one – for the sake of unity and the idea I might actually ‘get’ what hooks so many people.

We arrive at the river with the realisation that the unusual Invercargill warmth in our backyard does not translate to the lower Oreti washed in a stiff sea breeze. And we’d forgotten jerseys/jackets.

The kids are right. My 3-year-old traipses the 50 metres from the car, over the grass verge and down to the water’s edge, back and forth, back and forth. He’s on a mission: he takes his ‘diving equipment’; flippers, snorkel and a rope; several buoys he’d slipped into the car; a broken fishing rod; and his sister’s trike and his own. When asked if he wants to have a go on his Dad’s rod, he says, “I’m too busy”.  His sister scrambles up and down the bank, and takes her boots off and on. Meanwhile, I huddle in the long grass trying to keep warm and my partner fishes and walks a few hundred metres downstream.

I do have a go, casting half a dozen times but don’t feel too comfortable with goose-bumps on my arms. The fish are not biting. We then sit by some trees, seeking some shelter, eating our picnic. The sandflies come and fed on us. Next time we’ll take jackets. Maybe I’ll catch a fish.  Or else we’ll have a picnic in the backyard.

6 Comments leave one →
  1. November 1, 2010 6:21 am

    Hi Juliet.
    I’ve pointed to your article on my blog here:

    We went out to Stewart Island yesterday here:

    • November 1, 2010 9:47 pm

      Sweet, thanks. Looks like you had a very successful day’s fishing. Do you have your own boat or do you go out with friends?

      • November 6, 2010 5:55 pm

        Cr Neville Cook invited me to crew his boat for the day!
        ‘Crewing’ largely meant admiring the fabulous scenery out on the strait, hauling in cod and backing the trailer down the slipway at the end of the day. All very satisfying. My boats are sail powered and one day we intend to sail across te ara a kiwa with a flotilla though it’ll never be as idyllic as it was on this last trip (yachts needing wind and all!).

  2. November 8, 2010 2:36 am

    A good way to do some networking if need be! Yeah, we’d aiming to get a trailer sailer one day when we can afford it. I like the idea of sailing by wind more although motor boats are probably more practical, especially around here.

    • November 9, 2010 6:30 am

      Nah! Sails are the way of the future. I’ll let you know when we are out on the ocean next and you might like to come aboard.

      • November 9, 2010 6:40 am

        Yeah, true. Sure I would be keen as!

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