Maybe the best place to start – take a look at the autographs on the PB cap for a representative look at the PondBoss guys – celebrities, PhDs. MDs, DDSs, moderators, fishery folks and the rest of us good ole boys that all walk on common ground.
More about the cap later.
I picked up Bruce Condello at DFW airport shortly after noon on Thursday; a start to a great adventure was almost ended by an airport shuttle bus that decided that our lane was his - close enough to bump the side mirrors with no damage, and proceeded to deliver him to his hotel. Scared the bejabbers out of both of us so won’t have to worry about picking up Bruce again, unless he take away my keys...
I don’t drive well at night – if at all, so Dave Davidson picked me up at my son’s house in Bedford to go the Wyndham hotel for dinner for speakers, vendors and moderators (don’t have clue why I was invited) and back home later in the evening.
The dinner was a blast – sat at the same table with many of my friends that I had never met – a beginning of a great experience for next two days putting faces on PB forum friends.
Most faces fit the names/handles except two forum friends in particular -
Bill Cody and Theo Gallus.
Bill Cody has been along time mentor of mine, whether he knows it or not, and I had him visualized as a modern day westerner Bill Cody/John Wayne type, deadly serious with little to say except serious scientific talk with “it all depends” personality.
Was I ever wrong. Bill is a fantastic guy with a sense of humor and infectious laugh that was the life of the party.
Now Theo, a mind as brilliant as the sun with cutting edge wit – not so in person.
Theo is very shy and demure soft-spoken, introverted gentleman of the old school that would NEVER use wit and intelligence as a weapon...
A great time was had by all.
Friday is a blur – non stop, down and dirty fly tyin’, taking on all requests, mostly tying pellet flies and requesting donations for the scholarship fund. No time for attending sessions.
Since I had expended my entire month worth of energy in one day, Eric West suggested that we forego fly tying session for Saturday, and I was able to attend many of the technical session. My apologies for not being able to help folks with their fly tying, but in the future I will post pictures and instructions for tying some of the simple, but effective pond flies.
The last time I checked, at one table James Holt and crew were already tying flies on their own with no help needed….!
Oh yeah, the CAP.
A silent auction was held for scholarship donations to Dr. Dave Willis’s SDSU fishery students for applied fisheries research.
A few weeks ago Dave Davidson gave me brand spanking new PonBoss cap that I saved it to get a few autographs for the PB Conference “silent auction”.
It went for $170 bucks – can you believe that….?
So in jest I said I WANT MY CAP BACK….
Can you believe during the general session Saturday afternoon, following Todd Overton and Bruce Condello’s excellent presentations on HSB and monster BG’s, Bob Lusk called Dave Davidson and Eric West to the podium, and an apparent afterthought asked me to join them.
I was stunned and embarrassed when the y presented my with a PB cap with every old and newly acquainted friends autograph.
Thanks a million guys – this was an experience of a lifetime.
I had previously tied about three dozen flies for the auction that went for an unbelievable price of more than $200.
If any one missed out on donating to this worthy cause, I’m sure there is someone that will continue this program.
I’ve run out of words to express how important this conference was to me.
I learned a lot, but the fellowship with folks with common interest and values will bring me back time and time again.
Thanks Bob and all the others – job well done.