Sun Valley

So now I’ve been in Sun Valley for a few days, hanging out with my dad and Ray Ann, who are in the process of remodeling the kitchen here.

The reason they ended up remodeling is kind of silly: Their stove is pretty much busted, but the stove’s a 1974 original, so of course even the size that the stove was isn’t made anymore.

So in order to get a new stove, they would have had to tear out half the cabinets anyway, and once you get going on something like that, it’s in for a dime, in for a dollar. So now they’re redoing the whole damn kitchen.

So I got to hear arguments about changing the cabinet doors vs. replacing the cabinents completely, what kind of sink to get, whether they should also put in new lighting at the same time, blah blah blah blah blah. It’s interesting to watch, since I know I’m going to have to deal with this shit in the future, but it can get a little old.

I went fishing with my dad on Tuesday, which was fun. We always end up going with the same guide, mostly because neither of us owns equipment or really knows how to tie stuff on so that fishing can actually be accomplished.

The guide is this guy Jim who we’ve been going out with every 3 or 4 years for quite some time (and who my dad drags his Atlanta friends with). He’s a real good teacher and he taught me and dad how to actually set up the rods. I think he’s getting a little tired of teaching us the same casting technique year after year, since both of us have horrible memories.

Dad actually caught a fish (by which I mean both hooking and landing the fish). I landed a couple of trout that Jim had hooked, and then I hooked a couple that I couldn’t land (including a real big fish that I think was a Whitefish).

To us though, the point of fishing is less catching the fish than it is enjoying the scenery, which most places that you end up fishing is spectacular. You go way, way back into the mountains where there’s nothing but gravel roads.

Some places we’ve gone there’s not even that. But you look around and the only thing that wasn’t there 10,000, 20,000, 100,000 years ago is the road. And possibly the picnic table the Forest Service threw in there 50 years ago.

Otherwise, the serenity is incredible. Sometimes it’s almost dissappointing to catch a fish, because it distracts you from the peace and quiet. However, it is kind of fun to see who’s stupider: The idiotic fish or the idiots trying to catch them.

Fish are not terribly intelligent creatures, as evidenced by the fact that there was one time I caught the same fish twice in an hour (I could tell it was the same one because we couldn’t get the fly out so we just cut him loose with an unintended new piercing).

Humans, however, aren’t too goddamn smart either, as evidenced by the fact that we have such a difficult time fooling these obviously stupid creatures. There was one point the fly I was using was doing so little that it probably would have been easier for me to stab the fish with the end of the rod than it would have to get it to actually bite the damn fly.

However, that probably wouldn’t have made the catch and release policy I practice too easy, seeing as how the fish would have been somewhat dead.

We had a good time, though this has really been the only big thing that we did. This is kind of the problem with Sun Valley in the summer: Unless you play golf, there’s not something you can do every day that’s comprable to skiing.

And when it comes to golf, my dad and I are both terrible. Once, when I was about 16 or 17, we tried to play nine holes after taking some lessons. We ended up spraying about half a bucket of balls into various water hazards and roughs so rough that we just said fuck it, let the wolves have the golf balls.

Ray Ann, who at one point was an avid golfer, has tried to encourage him to try again by pointing out that the more time he spends on the golf course, the more he gets of his money’s worth.

My dad replies with something I believe in too: It makes not one lick of sense to go spend a shitload of money on something you’re not good at just to have the living hell frustrated out of you.

I’ve had fun here, though. I’ve been able to use the internet, which is something you don’t miss too much when it’s gone, but when you have it around you spend an inordinate amount of time messing around with it.

And I’ve been able to relax. Driving by myself for more than 2500 miles and running around like a maniac has worn me out a bit, so it’s been nice to just chill for a few days. It’s also been nice to speak to other humans in person.

That’s definitely one of the things you miss on a trip like this. But otherwise, I’m having a fucking great time.

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