Monday, March 22, 2010

Top 10 Ways You Know You’re Married to a Bamboo Fly Rod Maker

A moment with the maker and Veronica in the workshop.

1. He grew a beard because it looks “more professional”.
2. Your coat closet is a varnishing room.
3. Bamboo shavings are are regular accessory.
4. When you fill out any type of general questionnaire, there’s never a box to check for profession.
5. When you DO tell people what you do for a living, they think you are kidding.
6. My father dropped the “ in-law” 16 years ago and simply introduces Bill as his son.
7. Your five-year old thinks a graphite rod belongs in his “Star Wars” toy sword collection.
8. Your infant’s pack and play is wedged under a workbench.
9. As a wife, understanding his need to create and make something with his hands that is an extension of himself and will outlive our time here on earth.
10. When the hatch is on... he is gone!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Bamboo Fly Rod it Art?

Do we call this a workshop or studio?

Cutter always tells people he wants to make bamboo fly rods when he grows up (and be an "army man", fireman and hero). Yesterday, a woman was in the shop and she asked him what he wanted to be when he grew up. Cutter quickly replied, "an artist." I said, "I thought you wanted to be a bamboo fly rod maker like daddy?" Cutter said, "I do, daddy is an artist." After gushing with pride over my son because of his word association, I started thinking about how dead-on he was about bamboo fly rod making being an art. Fly fishing is an art. Most of the fly fishers I know have two things in common...they are analytical and passionate people. Normally, life squeezes the artist out of us. I think that fly-fishing and subsequently bamboo fly rod making allows us to tap into that part of our heart that has always been there. We consider Bill an artist because of his talent and free hand engraving but it is clear (and often overlooked) that the making of a bamboo fly rod is a true art. Taking a piece of Tonkin Cane bamboo and sculpting it into an extension of one's fly fishing self is art. Life is art.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Snow, Bamboo Fly Rods, Classes, more snow...oh my!

So...a few days of snow in North Georgia is fun and charming. BUT, this winter has been brutal. It has snowed a lot this winter...a lot. My five year old does not even look up when it snows. However, snow or ice...Bill makes it to our bamboo fly rod shop and works. The kids and I usually stay home on those days because it's too dangerous on the roads. The shop is usually our second home and when we teach bamboo fly rod making classes it becomes our first home. We had a new group of six students in town last weekend and the workshop had incredible energy and everyone had such a good time. Really! Two of our students are back for the second and third time! The budding rodmakers stayed busy flaming, scraping and planing, Bill taught at full tilt, Veronica rolled around in her walker and Cutter tied flies! Yes, Cutter (who just turned 5) is our most gifted "Fly Tyer"! Some mothers are so proud of their child's academic or athletic achievement. This mother loves her son's passion for the fly.