Accompanied by doom-laden headlines about hosepipe bans, double-dip recession, petrol shortages, and killer shrimp in the Norfolk Broads, next Tuesday’s official publication date for Trout in Dirty Places is creeping ever closer.
And like that old (but very apt) analogy of a dropped pebble’s ripples widening over a pool, the story still seems to be spreading slowly across the media…
First there was Paul Sharman’s review on Fish&Fly, followed by Michael McCarthy’s Thames-linked feature in last Friday’s Independent.
Yesterday BBC Radio Scotland called me in for an interview with Fred MacAulay, sharing a slot with Alistair Stewart live from the Kelvin. It’s possible I’ll be trying to repeat his performance with one of Radio 4’s presenters on the banks of the Wandle early next week: meanwhile, Radio New Zealand have also been in touch, and there should be plenty of other reviews in the pipeline.
Is this the sort of more-than-just-a-fishing-title reaction I’d hoped for when I wrote my first proposal to Merlin Unwin, suggesting a trailblazing book about urban fly-fishing, the strangely beautiful places it takes you, and above all the people who’ve made it possible?
Gentle reader, the answer has got to be a great big yes.
Two and a half years later, maybe it isn’t so surprising that when the economy’s tanking and the south of England is slowly catching fire, this rare good news story about recovering urban rivers feels like that metaphorical cool splash of water on a news-hound’s burning brow. Which is exactly how urban fly-fishing has always felt to me too… and to most other city fishers I’ve ever met.
More soon, we hope!