Why Do I Go Fishing?
Recently, I had numerous anglers complain to me about the cost of fishing, the regulations in fishing and the people involved in and around fishing. These people were all put off by fishing period! Talking to them, I realized that fishing can have a negative impact on people as well as a positive impact on people, just like anything else in life. I asked them, "Why did they fish then?"
All of them said it was an escape from daily life. I thought to myself, they must have a pretty rough life if they were trying to escape from it. I suggested to them to take someone less fortunate than themselves fishing and then let me know what they feel. So I answered the same question.
Why Do I Go Fishing and Talk Fishing?
I can't speak for anyone but myself. I don't fish and teach about fishing to escape from daily life, but rather for what I am seeking out of life. I am involved in fishing for one main reason: It has given me a common bond with others that breaks all boundaries. Fishing for me isn't about how many fish or how big a fish I catch. It's not about winning fishing tournaments. Fishing has let me find a way to give some less fortunate people their human dignity back. It lets me reach out to all the less fortunate people in the world.
Just this week I fished with some of the states most abused and neglected children. Another day this week I was able to give a Make-A-Wish child the wish he dreamed for, and on another day I was in the presence of some elderly people who have no one to visit them, care for them or talk to them. It was fishing that brought me to them. The time I spend with them fishing or talking fishing takes them away from the sadness, the hurt, the loneliness and the sickness they suffer from. We smile, we laugh and together we bring back the human spirit they once had.
After doing this for over 19 years, I realize that the human spirit is more powerful then any drug. With our fishing bond comes friendship and the things that matter most, such as compassionate human interaction! Somehow the world forgot about these people and fishing brought them back. Even for the briefest of moments I am with them, I can see in their faces that the world isn't empty or so cold anymore. Fishing gives them something to dream about and look forward to. It gives them purpose. These things that matter the most to them are simple things; it makes them feel wanted and special.
It's sad we take those things for granted in each other. I try to never forget any of those people, and in a very special way, they make me feel good about why I believe that interacting with them through fishing gives them a place where they can find some peace and purpose. And they give something back to me. Something bigger then I could ever imagine. It's a feeling -- a great state of mind. They touch and move me in a way that neither fame nor fortune could ever do!
That's why I fish, teach and talk fishing. Below is a link to a fishing story called, "The Greatest Fishing Story Ever Told." I promised that I would send it to every fisherman I knew. There is another one coming out about a little boy, a shark and the greatest of all miracles. I just have to finish the story.
It is my company's mission statement not only to teach, educate, inform and entertain anglers, but to change the world by reaching out and helping the less fortunate through fishing. It is something we always strive to get better at doing. We want to make helping people through fishing not a sometime thing, but an all-time thing.
I say that when we reach that goal, we only then ... almost touch perfection.
Captain David M Rieumont
The Online Fisherman Inc.