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The Fisherman

Page 4

‘I have not decided that at all. Why are you so bloody angry? I thought we came down here to fish, have a bit of booze, a bit of a yarn, catch a fish or two, maybe go back to the pub later for some women. Saw a nice dark-haired one the other night but she was with this other bloke who I reckon was giving her the pip a bit.’

‘I’m sick of women, they treat you rough, don’t treat you nice, not like my old mum. Nobody treats us like my old mum did, that’s for sure. Why aren’t there women like my old mum anymore, that’s what I would like to know?’

It was about mid-afternoon now; the sun was starting to drop behind the hills. There were reflections on the water, little sparkles where the sun caught the smaller ripples. Insects darted quickly above the water, using speed as their safety net. Most of the time it worked. Ted headed back to his spot. He could see a few fish jumping as he moved along the bank. There were deep pools close to the bank, dark in colour, with branches hanging down low over the water. The grass under his feet was dry and there was a gentle track in which to follow the stream. He fished for a while, as the sun went lower. He tried the pools closer to the bank where there were the shadows, and he tried the open spots where there were little rapids as the water rushed over the river stones.

The sun dropped lower so he decided to head back. He followed the same track back enjoying the quiet of the bush as things settled down for the night. The track came around a bend in the creek and then up a short rise before dropping down towards the pub. Ted could see Bill in the distance talking to a woman. As he got closer he could see they were sitting close together in conversation and Bill had his arm around her waist. Bill saw Ted coming and gave a wave and Ted returned the wave.

‘Hey, Ted,’ said Bill. ‘Come and meet Beryl, she’s me missus.’

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