A Christmas Present from the Queen

A True Story by Jack Gartside

“As I approached the moat I looked this way and that to make sure there was no one around, joined the two pieces of my rod together, and with one flick of my wrist sent the little brown fly I had tied to my leader out into the middle of the moat, where I could see two very large trout swimming slowly about, waiting for the tourists to show up, no doubt. The Unsinkable Molly Brown (my name for the fly, tied from mink scraps scrounged from a Soho furrier’s trash) must have looked like a crust of bread or perhaps a piece of sausage or something else good to eat and the trout lost no time in coming for it. The smaller trout got there first, inhaled the fly, and I set the hook. Then it was off to the races. It took me around the moat twice before I was able to land it. At least five pounds, I figured. A very nice trout, indeed, which I quickly released. And just as quickly I unjoined the rod pieces, hid them under my long winter overcoat, and casually walked away.”

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‘specially if they look like sausages !…

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