Here is a recap on the last two weeks. The waiting from November to April has come and gone. I arrive in Allentown, PA and Jack and Kathy pick me up. I get my license and Jack and I get caught and swap old war stories. The truck is loaded at 2:00 am and we are headed for the Asbury Graphite Mill Bridge for Opening Day of Trout fishing. We get to the bridge and Jack pulls along side of the sidewalk. We unload the truck and Jack parks in his reserved spot. It's cold enough out to light the kerosene heater. I had to get a picture of this as Jack lights it. It's 3:03 am. We will wait now until 8:00 am when opening day starts.
Jack starts to set up the fishing poles. He spreads them out. You have about a shoulder length to maneuver around to fish. Believe it or not this was plenty of room. Jack has all the poles out. We set up the buckets with a board on top of them just behind us. New Jersey limit per day for stocked trout is six. Jack looks at me and says "What you think"? I said, Oh yea! Now he says "Don't forget about your U.P.S. delivery". I still have no idea about the U.P.S. delivery. The fog comes in and the heater felt good right about now. More people start coming in and grabbing a place. Now we get a few sprinkles of rain but that ain't going to ruin or damper this party. At 7:00 am Jacks wife was bringing the coffee and doughnuts. Jack already has her spot saved.
It's around four in the morning now and Jack says one more hour for your U.P.S. delivery. It's now five in the morning and there are five or six of us swapping stories around the kerosene heater. This pick-up truck pulls up right next to the curve and stops right in front of me. As he rolls down his window Jack yells to me, your U.P.S. delivery is here. I don't see any brown truck. I can't make out who it is in this pick-up truck. I just know it ain't a brown U.P.S. truck. The guy rolls down the window and he don't say nothing but he laughs some and pulls off. I have no idea what just happen. Jack is looking at me. Jack says come on as we walk to where this guy parked. As we get to the door of this truck Jack says "Here's your U.P.S. delivery, Useless Pete Stanszani When I looked inside the cab I couldn't believe it was Pete. I haven't seen Pete in 17 years. What a surprise. Pete and I were best of friends when I lived up there. When Pete pulled up and rolled his window down he was to yell at me to get out of his spot, but he couldn't do it. I was speechless when I saw him. We got back to our spots and we got caught up. It's been a long time. I couldn't thank Jack enough how he pulled this off. I was sure glad he did. As some fishermen start wading in the water one slips and almost went under. The people that wade in are not liked by the ones fishing from the bridge. I think it's a New Jersey thing.
We are down to two minutes to Opening Day. I click on my sun glasses that video tape. Every fishing pole on the bridge is loaded up with some type of bait. Jack yells out, "two minutes". Then he says one minute to go. The next thing, Jack whistles. Opening day is here! Everybody drops in. Fish on Jack yells, Pete says he got one, and then I yell fish on. It was like shelling peas for us. As fast as we could re-bait and drop in, it was fish on, we slay them. We finished for the three hours we fished with Jack's count at 45 and mine with 27.We caught that many, not kept that many. We fished for an hour and half in the morning and went and had breakfast that Kathy was cooking back home. After an afternoon snooze it was back to the trout stream for another round. We fished for another hour and some. Some fishermen and fisher women got mad because we caught so many. I will say this, after the "fish bite" died off and not that many were catching them, we were still slaying them. It was like shooting fish in a barrel. We had the right bait and we did some bragging.
After breakfast Jack cleans 31 trout to take to the Pizza place where we will trade for anything off the menu. That evening Jack got Lasagna, Kathy got chicken wings, and I got a large pizza. The one that has grease running down your arm, that's when you know it's good! As we sat there eating Jack asks me, "Was it worth"? I couldn't thank Jack and Kathy enough for everything they did to make my stay the best that it could be. My whole experience fishing that weekend and all I can sum up in one word, "Priceless". Until next week-H.S.F.H.-L.M.
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