It was like a ghost town around here this past week. It appeared as though everyone in the valley left to seek warmer climes, more skiing (!) or even just a change of scenery.
Wherever people went, they were certainly hoping to return to a finished melt-off, water flowing through their pipes, and mud all dried up. Some super optimists even dreamed of being able to return home via the North Cascades Highway.
Well, disappointment may have reigned, at least in the upper reaches of the valley, but progress is definitely being made in all of these areas.
And before you develop that deadly disease of FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) that occurs when you feel that simply everyone is out doing something more fun, exciting or just all-around sunny, stop right there. First, not everyone was on a beach drinking a fruity drink, it just seemed that way. And second, there is the antonym of FOMO, and that is JOMO (Joy of Missing Out).
While many people were gone, it gave our area this luscious quiet and solitude that is not often found anymore. There were no sounds of vehicles to drown out the raucous honking of the returning geese, it was possible to walk for miles without seeing another human, and the lack of the vibrancy of crowds gave one the ability to spy carpets of spring beauties flourishing among the decayed winter matter. Maybe it wasn’t 80 degrees in Mazama, but there was still much joy to be found in sticking around and having a sort of staycation.
A staycation is exactly what Claire Bunney said that she had a couple of weeks ago while her partner, Jay Lucas went on an incredible fishing trip.
Jay, John Stevens, Harry Sanders and Bob Jateff took off to Christmas Island in the Republic of Kiribati for a week in order to partake in some of the world’s best saltwater fly fishing. Just getting there is difficult, as there is only one flight in and one flight out each week. It is approximately 3.5 hours from Honolulu and around half way to Fiji.
Once there, if you are looking for another Tahiti, you won’t find it. Jay describes the accommodations as adequate at best, and according to Professor Google, supplies and a variety of food types are difficult to find, being so remote.
This is a place that a person goes to for the fishing. And fish, they did. Their days began at 5:30 a.m. and they were off to the “flats” along with their guides by 7 a.m. and not returning until 5 p.m. each day.
The flats are areas of shallow water that fishermen walk in while looking for the bonefish that they hope to catch. Bonefish are very difficult to spot and almost impossible to catch unless spotting them is done first. Jay likens this “spotting” to a hunter scouting an area first in order to actually hunt.
All fishing here must be done with a guide and on foot. The fishing tourism industry is very important to them, as there is not much other industry and the guides are highly respected members of their community.
Aside from bonefish, this group from Mazama and Winthrop caught seven varieties of fish in total. After their week, they left on the Wednesday flight and returned to Honolulu the previous day.
What? Did they drink too much kava? Did the fall into a strange worm hole of time travel? Nope. Christmas Island is across the International Date Line. They just gained back the day they had lost, as well as gaining an incredible experience.