Far Bank Lucky charms & lost things
Ever had a lucky charm that you couldn’t fish without? Dom Garnett wonders if life will ever be the same now he’s lost his favourite hat...
WHAT on earth I have done with it is quite beyond me.
The previous winter that hat was virtually welded to my head on every fishing expedition.
Well-pocked and well-loved, to put it politely, it wouldn’t have won any fashion awards. But it did more than keep my ears warm – it had a definite sentimental value, if not actual magical powers.
Why we grow so emotionally attached to simple objects I cannot say. It seems illogical, not to mention unfortunate, to someone as absent-minded and prone to losing things as I am.
Anglers fall into one of two categories in this respect. Some of us have little or no affection whatsoever for old things. We will happily upgrade our rods, reels and fishing wear for the latest model. Some of my closest fishing friends are just like this, baffled that anyone would want to stick with last decade’s rod or an ancient centrepin reel.
But for the rest of us, our fishing paraphernalia has a peculiar emotional hold. It reminds us of youth or happy times on the water. We covet and collect it. Worse, we even believe these things bring us luck.
Even as a natural sceptic, I cannot help but be sucked in by the emotion and superstition surrounding personal things. Their loss or breakage hurts me keenly, from the various rods I’ve managed to smash to the wristwatch I somehow lost while wading a local stream. The damned thing is still probably ticking away on the riverbed.
If you are the sort of angler who still owns their first-ever rod, you may understand my irrational attachment to objects. Mine was an early 1980s fibreglass whip with a pointless but pretty yellow criss-crossed design at the butt end. It had some nonsense lettering like the word ‘Olympic’ or ‘Champion’ on it, as if it could magically transform me from a naïve seven-year-old to a kind of fishing god.
Perhaps not, but I was convinced it was somehow lucky. Years later it was almost dragged to the car boot sale and sold, before I sheepishly hid it, loath to let go.
So here I am, no longer seven but 37, looking for my lost hat and ruminating... still bestowing sentimental value, if not genuine magical properties, upon simple objects.
Sure, I could easily buy another, almost identical, hat. I will probably do exactly that, once I’ve turned the house upside down a second time and admitted defeat.
But I know it won’t be the same. Because our treasured possessions are more than mere things. They hold stories and memories. They have triumphs and failures, passing from youth to old age just like us. And in the case of that damned hat, they can seem to dictate our very fishing fortunes.
“We believe fishing paraphernalia brings us luck”
Dated or otherwise, old tackle has many tales to tell.
Hat trick – my lucky headgear has served me well on so many trips.