Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Sunrise over the Missouri River End of March

This Morning I started  my walking for the season. I usually walk my dog every morning for about 45 minutes, so both of us can start to get ready for the upcoming Bird season. Here is what I saw this morning.



Nice way to start the walking season!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Missouri River Fishing Report From Craig MT

April3 2011


April showers bring May flowers, yes, it's raining some, showers, but, this time of the year, it helps the fishing. Streamers, are very good right now, and no weeds! Nymphing is good, not great, Dry fly spotty , wind and cloud dependent. Birds are flying, grass is growing, Midges are hatching! And, there are fish rising in the afternoons and late during the evenings. Book today for Spring and summer trips, still have some dates open in May and June. The Fishing days have gotten shorter, about 11:00 am- 7:00 pm, but , there are some huge fish to be caught, on dry's, streamers, and deep nymphs. The nymphs I have on my other page will work wonderfully, when it warms up, try some, get out and have fun!
GNats in sizes #16-20, cripple midge(Black) #18. And, BWO cripples, emergers, and Drys you can see , anything small and pink is a great small Winter - Spring fly. #16-22 , ( Zebra's, PT's, Brassies, sow bugs, tasty bugs ,small # 16-22),even larger nymphs(scuds, worms,... stone flies, sizes #12-16) will produce ...Streamers fished deep and slow, will produce big browns of gold...Check my fly selection for patterns

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Late Fall, Winter is Knocking at the door.

As the Fall season gives way to winter, it saddens me to think that the "Bird season" is almost through for another year. I started hunting this past season in early September, finding fair numbers of "Huns" and Sharp tailed grouse. At this time of the year, I only hunt very early in the morning due to the fact that the rattlesnakes are still out and active. Not that I'm afraid of snakes , but my dog is a Lab and she thinks that everything in the world should love her, she has no idea about Badgers , nor rattlesnakes, both being very dangerous.
This past summer I ran into a local rancher who was taking a break during the heat of the day to fly fish a bit and cool off down by the river. He was accompanied by an English setter, and a Britney Spaniel, both who were panting due to the bright sun over head. The rancher asks me if I'd seen any snakes, and I had seen one, but it was a "bull snake" I told him. "Oh," he said, well, "no rattlers then"? No, I usually do not see rattlesnakes down near the water, especially when there are bull snakes around. I then asked him if he let his dogs just run around, or do they have to stay on 'heel'? He said he let them run, he said, both had been hit by rattlers in the past, and that the setter nearly died. He told me after that he took both dogs to a clinic they have in Great Falls, to educate dogs about snakes. Here's what he told me; that they put shock collars on the dogs and turn them up on high, they have de- fanged and de- venemonized rattlesnakes, so when the dogs approach the snakes , and the snake strikes, the dogs are hit hard with the shock collar. The rancher said it really works, and that when a dog (after this clinic) see's a snake of any kind, they keep their distance.
When my Lab (Pearl) was just a small pup, she went everywhere with me. I'd take her to the office and in the boat when I was fishing, or even while I was guiding. One warm, sunny spring day in May I was floating the stretch just above town, it was the first really warm day of the season. Fishing was great, there were a good number of Baetis, Midges, and the Caddis where just starting. I was alone with Pearl, parked fishing dry flies to rising trout, when out of the corner of my eye; I saw a movement near the back of the boat. When I turned, I saw a large light brown colored head peeking into the back of the boat, with a 3 month old puppy wagging its tail welcoming the visitor. I quickly, but gently, used the rod tip to steer the snake in another direction. The rattler complied, and swam off; thank goodness I saw it before it entered. It was a very large snake, can you imagine, in the drift boat, a 3 month old puppy, me, and a huge rattlesnake, parked in the middle of the Missouri River in May? Think about that for a moment...
I was going to talk about Real estate, but got side tracked, tomorrow is another day...

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Driving on the other side ( Part 12 )


 It was an interesting “hatch” that evening, mainly caddis flies; the predominant size was a # 12 Tan Caddis. Some of the trout were feeding on the surface, but, it was extremely windy. Billy mainly tried for this large brown trout who was feeding near the bank on the other side of the creek; the trout was feeding when ever one of the large caddis flies floated over head.  The wind made the cast quite tricky, for gust blew upward to 30- 40 mph, at times blowing sheets of water down stream covering boulders in their entirety. Bender knew he would be doing almost nothing but fishing for the next two days, and decided to quit early, cook something for dinner, drink some fine New Zealand beer, then, sit by a warm fire and stare into a Southern Hemispheric starry night.
As Billy sat near the glowing fire and finished the last little bit of the warm minestrone soup, he noticed that the wind had subsided. Bender could hear an almost feeding frenzy taking place out on the creek, especially down stream where the river curved at a bend forming a long, deep pool. Here Bender could not see, but rather could hear the trout, slashing, gulping and thrashing the surface of the elongated pool. Billy also noticed that with the wind down, the hatch of caddis flies had intensified to the point that Billy was being continuously hit by the large moth like insects, the air was alive with “bats,” feeding above the creek, and trout feeding on the surface, it was a feeding orgy, with the large caddis being what was on the menu. It was pitch black, the only illumination was from the stars above, Billy sat on the bank of the creek, and listened to the carnage, and he pulled out the small pipe and inhaled more of the sweet Rangitikei red bud. It was warm that evening, so Bender decided to just grab his rod, skip the waders and boots, and cast an over sized caddis into the boiling water with only his shorts, and vest. The mud felt great between Benders toes as he waded into the shallows preparing for his first cast. He had tied on a very large # 6 dark brown caddis, the fly landed just off the tall bank on the other side, where Billy had heard disturbance’s that indicated large fish. As the #6 caddis started to drag from the tightening of the line, Billy then felt a strong tug coming from across the creek. It was powerful fish, moving up and down the pool and tearing line along with each run. Earlier that day, Bender had landed fish upward to six pounds, but, this beast felt at least twice as heavy. Bender was thinking how he could photograph the trophy without injuring the beauty. He had the camera in his vest pocket, it had a flash, and maybe it would turn out. The plan would be to drag the beast onto the wet grass, here it would be safe, take a quick photo, and release the beast. As Bender was bringing the fish toward shore, he could see the outline of the beauty in the dark water. It was longer than anything Bender had landed prior, it was enormous, Billy’s heart began to race, and it was a fish of a life time.
Then, the light from the rising moon lit up the area similar to a small spot light. Bender looked at the fish closer, it seemed thinner than it had appeared in the dark water. It was an Eel, nearly 5 ft. long, black on its back with a light colored belly. Bender tried to break the line with his hand, but nothing doing, the huge black serpent like beast was slashing wildly in the wet grass. Bender wanted nothing more than to dislodge the beast from his line, but, knew that this snake like fish had huge teeth and could inflict a nasty bite, Bender was miles from anybody, and he knew to be careful. With bare feet, holding the line taunt with the over sized caddis stuck in the corner of the beast mouth; Bender stepped on its head and gave the line a quick, hard pull. The line snapped Billy fell backward into the muddy wet grass; just two feet away the 3ft long eel slashed wildly, and wiggled its way back into the creek. Bender, wet, from chest down ward, with mud dripping down his bare legs, stood and watch his prey swim back to safety.
Bender made his way back to the camp and re-kindled the fire, opened a DB Brown, dried himself off and then laughed. What a day of mixed emotions thought Billy, but, what a day, what a day indeed.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Driving on the other side ( PART 11 )


It was late afternoon when Bender finally decided to take a break from fishing, get something to eat, and rest before the evening “hatch”. Due to the amount of “no- see-ums”, and sand flies, Bender sat inside his tent, behind the mosquito netting. He thought of the first people who inhabited the Island, the Maori’s, and wondered just how they dealt with the bug problem. Billy thought, well, they are an oceanic people , Polynesian, so perhaps they could live by the sea during the bug season, here it would be windy, and keep the bugs at bay, plus, the ocean is full of food, he thought it made sense for them to most likely to have lived near the coast line. The only reason they needed to go inland was to retrieve wood for building and burning, and, to collect fruit and plants. For New Zealand was a land void of mammals, no predators, the mammals were all introduced by Europeans.
It was time for a food inventory, Bender had three day, and he wanted to see if in fact he’d brought enough food. There is two loaves of good multi grain bread, a huge quarter of white cheese with the wax still attached to help preserve it. Three cans of white albacore tuna, a large plastic bag containing a pound of mixed nuts, four packets of dried soups, minestrone seemed to be the flavor of choice.  Six Breburn apples, a packet of shortbread cookies, a large Cadbury fruit and nut bar, and of course, mayo, mustard, and sea salt. There was also Beer, DB brown (Dominion Bitters), a case of 12 Quart bottles. Bender would also have a trout the second night, just to ensure he would have amble amount of food, in case something happened and he was not retrieved.  Bender had noticed some wild onion, and some meadow mushrooms both growing near the creek, he had already made plans to harvest a smallish brown trout of no more than two pounds, a perfect hot meal.
As Bender lay in his dark green Eureka four man tent, he could only hear the sound of the wind, blowing through the willows and far off Beech and Oak trees. The strange sounds of birds he was not familiar, and the ever constant rush of  “Happy creek”, that flowed just below him. Billy could not sleep, all alone in a place that many would consider Eden, Bender thought about what he’d left back in Great Falls. For when Bender was told to “take some time off”, he was not sure if in fact it was due to saving him from the current economic disaster, and returning him at a better time. Or, to let him go, become the scape goat for the lack of security that needed to be updated within the entire DA Davidson Corporation. Billy knew that it was an economic decision to upgrade the security system; it would cost thousands to have every single client’s portfolio information encrypted. The warnings from the Government were always delayed; experts in the field felt like the company would have years to change over the entire security system. But, being hacked by two thugs in Eastern Europe brought the attention of the US Government. It was clear, all “on- line” transactions, on all levels, from credit cards, to Bank transfers, Stock and Bond trades, all on- line transactions, will have to be in compliance.
Bender wanted to be back at the job, to get his branch “up to speed”, but he knew he would have to wait. It was a time of unknowns, the stock market had fallen so fast, that experts were comparing this time with the great depression, most peoples portfolios has dropped 40-60%. Retirements gone, savings gone, people’s hope, for a great number of them, gone.
Billy unzipped the door of the tent, he stepped out and took a long a deep breath. Looking around, he realized just how fortunate he was, to be on a trout stream in New Zealand, full of huge trout, nobody for miles, for he had the upper section of Happy Creek, all to himself. He grabbed his vest and Rod and started to walk up stream when he felt something bulging in the lower left hand pocket of his vest, the place where Billy kept his fine selection of dry flies. He opened it to find a bag filled with beautiful green buds, with red hairs permeated throughout. There was a whitish color incorporated very faintly covering the entire flower.  There was also a small pipe, and a note, it read. “Rangitikei Red Bud, enjoy!” Bender had not had the time nor want to smoke pot for many years, but, being alone in Paradise, he thought, what a wonderful place to be "high" and forget about the problems of the world. He sat on a granite boulder, just above the creek, and inhaled the sweet smoke, allowing all the worlds’ problem to blow away with it.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Driving on the other side ( Part 10 )

The north Island of New Zealand is as green and lush as any place on the Planet. It is considered semi tropical, with temperate weather, not getting too hot in summer or, too cold during the winter months. The only real constant with the weather in the New Zealand, is the consistency of rain that seems to deluge year round. This is true of the entire country; in the North Island the weather is quite a bit warmer than the southern part of the South Island. On the west coast of the South Island, it rains nearly everyday. Most days it is just a mist, other days the sky cries huge crocodile tear sized raindrops. It is one of the wettest places on the planet, when one thinks of New Zealand; the color green comes straight to thought.
Billy was driving on a highway in a North East direction from the huge Lake Taupo. He had been driving for nearly an hour, but had not yet seen the great Rangitikei River that was discussed at length in the book Billy had purchased in Auckland. Then, the road came to an extremely long and steep decline, and Billy could just get a glimpse of the famous river. It was a raging torrent, white water breaking over the tops of boulders the size of Volkswagens. The great river was in flood stage, Benders heart sank, knowing that fishing here would be impossible. At the bottom of the hill, there was an enormous span bridge that crossed the river, and on the right side was a small store with two 14 ft. rubber rafts and a sign that read “Fishing Guide and Float Trips”. Bender pulled into the small grey wooden building to inquire about the possibilities of fishing some where close. It had rained earlier, the air was thick with moisture, the ground still saturated, and the late morning sun was warming the earth and creating a penetrating humidity. Before Bender could enter the shop, out came a bearded man wearing a baseball cap and shorts who was in his early thirties. “Hi, my name is Tom, how can I help you?” Bender smiled and said, ‘ you must be the famous American fishing guide who hails from Wyoming”.  Tom adjusted his cap and said, “Well, I’m not too sure about the famous part, but I do come from Jackson Hole”. Bender and Tom got through the introductions, when Tom asked, “How many flies, dry flies to be exact did you bring down with you?” Bender replied, “I don’t know, I usually have a couple thousand with me, maybe more”. Toms face lit up, and with a Cheshire cats grin asked, “Do you want to make a deal?” Tom went on, “if you give me say 300 dry flies of my choice, I'll take you to one of the top trout streams in the entire country, and you can camp there, and I’ll pick you up after three days”. Bender said, “Great, I came to fish, that works perfect for me, lets do it”. Tom needed Parachute style Mayflies,” Adams is a color combination that is neutral enough to work for most imitations of the mayflies that Tom was interested in matching.
 In less than thirty minutes Bender was packing the back of Toms small yellow “mini”, a car one size larger than a child’s plastic toy in which it moves by a youngsters constant pedaling. Tom explained that the road was so narrow, that no other car would make it the final destination. The two spent the next 3 hours driving along, and, at times up and over rail road tracts. The only other way to reach the upper tributary of “ Happy Creek”, was by helicopter, and the cost were prohibitive, Tom needed dry flies, and he was willing to drive all day to obtain them.
After the long, bumpy, and at times treacherous journey concluded, Tom and Billy stopped and glared speechless at the boulder latten creek. Tom said “, this will blow your mind, at least it blows mine, I think your in for a real treat”. Billy and Tom stood and looked into the freestone creek that was 3 feet at the deepest, very crossable, and, at its widest point maybe 50 ft., an easy cast. The water was extremely clear, with “chair” sized boulders intermixed every ten feet apart. Classic freestone water, with some of the boulders “Lazy-boy sized” and other more comparable with footstools. The bank was grass, the creek cut through a small canyon a mile above , but, where Tom and Billy where gazing into the water , the creek cut through a large open meadow that was lined with willows  that was the only tree around. It was a caster friendly creek, wade able, with little to catch the back cast. Tom said, “Let me point out where these trout hold, you can see them in front of and behind the boulders”. With his hands blocking the sun from the sides of his polarized sunglasses, Tom exclaimed, “there is a four pounder holding just in front of that boulder, Brown trout, and another larger fish just across from us near the bank, maybe six pounds, and there is another, nice rainbow just here ten feet away, it might go five or six pounds, you can put your tent right here, there are at least 8-9 nice fish in this first pool!”
Bender started erecting the tent while Tom cast a small grass hopper over the large brown trout near the bank. Billy heard , “ Damn, missed him, maybe I should leave these for you, there is only one trout I’d like to try for before I start my drive back, that is if you don’t mind “, asked Tom. “ Hey, no problem, fish all you want, I cannot thank you enough for taking me up here” Bender exclaimed.
Tom and Billy walked up stream along the creek with Tom pointing out fish and good water to look for them rising once the sun was lower, until they came to the beginning of the canyon water. Here Tom asked Billy for his help; to watch the reaction of this trout when it takes the nymph, Tom explained that from his position above the trout, all he could see was the oily surface of the water. He went on to say that indicators spook the trout, he has spooked the trout many times trying very small indicators. The only time Tom hooked the monster, was with a very long, fine tippet, with his partner watching and telling him when to strike.  The reason that Tom was fishing above the fish was due to the pool flowed into the bank, with trees all around in the way of the back cast, the only way to approach the fish was from up stream.
Tom and Billy both got into position, Billy hidden behind a bush just behind the pool, and Tom 25-30 feet above the pool. Tom asked Billy, ‘can you see the trout yet?” Billy asked, does he lie near the log at the bottom of the pool? Tom laughed, adjusted his hat, touched his light brown colored beard and replied, “No, that log, is the fish!” Billy had never in all his years of Fly fishing, seen a trout that size, it was well over 15 lbs.  It was a male brown trout, that had a kype like a spawning salmon. It moved ever so gently in a back and forth movement that without training would be very difficult to detect that it was in fact a trout.
Billy told Tom to try and cast the heavily weighted pheasant tail nymph to the head of the pool and feed line, allowing the nymph to slowly drift past the goliath as naturally as possible. The clarity of the water was impressive, “Gin Clear” is the term used by the Kiwis, and it is very descriptive. Tom made his first cast, and it looked perfect, but the currents pulled the nymph away from the path of the large brown. Billy yelled to Tom to cast further down stream, and he did, this time the nymph landed more into the pool and here the currents were softer. Billy could see the reaction of the trout as the imposter was floating towards him, the giant slowly moved up stream to intercept the drifting imitation, opening its mouth, and as it did the nymph started to float directly into the zone. Billy told Tom to get ready; it was floating perfect, right on target. The fly entered the mouth of the “Log”, but the trout did not shut its mouth, something happened, perhaps just at the moment the trout may have felt the tippet, hard to say, but the weary brown trout , just disappeared, gone , hidden away. Billy explained to Tom what transpired, Tom laughed, and said, “Well that’s not the first time that has happened, and I’m sure that will not be the last time”.
The two shook hands back at the camp , and Tom told Billy he would be there  to retrieve him in three days, unless something catastrophic happens, but , he would let people know that Billy was here camping, and if anything happened, to pick him up. Tom turned to Billy and said “enjoy, your in paradise, and see if you can get a fly into that ‘log”; I’ll see you in three days”. As the“mini” faded out of sight, Billy could hear only the sounds of the song birds, and the constant rush of the creek, Bender, was in fact in Paradise.

Driving on the other side ( Part 9 )


Billy waded out of the mouth of the Waitahanui following the last of the hard core fishermen. The frenzy had concluded, the Moon was waxing, supplying just enough light to return back to the car without the need for a flashlight.  The sound of toads belching their” ribits, ribits” was near deafening, along with the occasional screeching  of Herons calling their mates from nearby Beech trees high above. It was a spectacular evening, despite being “skunked”; the lack of fish did nothing to diminish the extraordinary mindset that overcame Bender. As Billy sat in the Ford Taurus wagon, he saw the shadows of last remaining anglers being illuminated by flashes of headlights from passing cars, and thought tomorrow he would fish moving water, perhaps a small river or creek.
Bender was hungry for the feel of the line to tighten, that split second when one realizes “fish on”.  It is for many, why they fish, that split second where all the fly tying, traveling, preparation, and dreaming comes to one focal point. It is at that point is where one needs to have complete concentration; it is the point where either most fish are hooked properly, or lost. It is in just seconds that one will make decisions that will determine success or failure. One needs to be able to react to the fish’s behavior, and, not one fish acts the same. For each fish is an individual, reacting to being hooked differently. If Fly Fishing was easy, it would not be interesting.
Tonight, Bender was in need of nourishment and drink, he remembered seeing a roadside pub close by that featured “Lions Beer”. Each pub was sponsored by a particular beer company, and in front of this dark stained wooden building was a large blue sign with white lettering and the ever present Lion Logo depicting the big cat rearing up from a side profile in a rich golden color.  Bender began to salivate, remembering the smooth, rich, full, amber colored liquid, sweet nectar, with just a hint of a Hop after taste.” What da ya have?” barked the bar keep, Bender replied ,” a pint of the double brown ,thanks“, Billy sat at the light colored wooded bar that was shaped in a narrow rectangle, the floor was a matching color, but there was a strong contrast with the very dark brown walls , and white ceiling. Again Billy noticed that the entire building was constructed from a local hardwoods that seemed to be the choice of building material throughout the country. It was a typical country pub; there were two large stone fireplaces in the middle of the room, set on both walls directly across from each other. Seeing that it was the beginning of summer, there was only one fire burning. Billy sat on this side of the bar to warm up some, after wading for hours in the frigid Lake.
 Around the bar were a handful of locals, all slouched over wearing dark colored hats of different styles and shapes, with large glasses of the Lions brew that also came in different shades.  From the end of the rectangle, came a crusty voice asking Billy if he was a Yank, “I am, yes, doing a bit of fishing in the area, but, no luck tonight” Billy said. The room seemed to illuminate from the smiles of the patrons at the bar. The questions started, “where ya from Yank? “Before Billy could answer” where did you fish tonight, how long are you down here Yank, where are you staying Yank? “The warmth from the patrons overwhelmed Bender; it was genuine warmth that the local Kiwi’s had for Americans that Billy had never experienced in a foreign country. The barkeep placed a large white ceramic plate full of thick lamb stew, and a basket of warm crusty homemade bread, and real sweet butter in front of Bender. The plate was retrieved from a small sliding window that was cut in the wall at the end of the bar, when opened, Bender could see the outline of a women standing in a full kitchen.  The barkeep said “it’s from the Mrs., she wants to make sure you eat it all Yank”. Billy devoured the meal within minutes, it was the finest, and perhaps the freshest lamb stew he had ever had the pleasure to enjoy. During his meal, the patrons had given him loads of advice of where to fish the following day, with names Billy would never be able to remember, local Maori names that were completely foreign. But one name Billy did remember and all agreed it was a must to fish, was the Rangitikie River that flowed north East of the great lake Taupo. The barkeep said that there was an American who had a guide service, just at the bridge that crosses the big river. He was married to a local girl, and he thought that perhaps the Man was also from Montana, or maybe it was Wyoming, he couldn’t remember. But, they all agreed that that would be the place for Billy to go and fish the following day.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Driving on the other side... ( PART 8 )

Bender was up early and moving the following morning, first thing after coffee he stopped by a book store and found Rex Forrester’s, Trout Fishing in New Zealand. Here he discovered maps and information about Fly fishing on both Islands. The first part of the book was dedicated to fishing the North Island, with illustrations of flies that were local favorites, maps showing roads leading to all the different trout streams, and photos of spectacular trout caught over the past 60 years or so…Some of the fly's were the same patterns that Billy grew up fishing with on the Sun River, and the Big Missouri River that was just east of the Benders farm nearby the towns of Cascade, Craig, and Wolf Creek, MT. This section of the Missouri was Billy's favorite trout water he had ever fished. Here trout feed in large assemblies on the surface called "Pods", ingesting any insect that was either hatching, or, dying and floating over them. When Bender was first learning to how to fly fish, his uncle would guide him in their small wood drift boat and they would float from Holter Dam, down to the town of Craig, stopping on all the Islands to get out and wade fish. This is where Billy learned how to present a fly to a large, single trout feeding in very shallow, clear water. Long leaders, fine tippets, and a good cast, were necessary to present the fly in such a manner as not to "spook" the unsuspecting trout that may be feeding in water just barely covering its back.
From the book store Bender walked down to the corner where he saw a sign that read "Ace Rental Cars", the advertisement said that they were the largest rental car company with the cheapest rates in all of New Zealand, sounded perfect. Bender made a deal with the store manager to rent the car for 30 days, unlimited mileage for $300 NZ, and, Bender could drop the car off in almost any town on either Island, since "Ace" was in fact the largest rental car company, this seem ideal for what Bender had in mind.
Billy packed and loaded the Ford Taurus station wagon, and before checking out called Angie to thank her for her hospitality, and told her he would take her to dinner on his return in about a month’s time. Angie wanted to join Bender on his journey, pleading with him to take her along, but Bender just laughed and said he'd call her from time to time to stay in touch.
Billy drove south east toward a very interesting area of the North Island called "Taupo". In his new book were pictures of Hot Spring’s, and hot pools that were very similar to the Yellowstone area, with geysers, hot mud, and beautiful trout streams, all around a huge lake ( lake Taupo ), it was a near carbon copy of what Billy had seen many times in the southern part of Montana in Yellowstone Park. In the book that Billy had purchased, it had pictures of giant trout being caught in the mouth of a river called the" Waitahanui ". Here fishermen would line up out in the lake where the river entered, spaced evenly forming what appeared to be from the road looking out on the lake, as a "picket fence". Every evening, as the sun set, small bait fish felt safe enough to enter the currents formed from the river entering the lake, and feed on the nymphs that flowed in from the river. This brought the huge trout in to feed on the bait fish. The trick was to be able to cast far enough to reach where the bait fish felt like it was safe enough to feed. In the lake where the river entered, it was filled with sand from the eroding river, making the first 30-40 yards very shallow and easy walking. Then, there was a deeper channel, this is where the bait fish felt safe to feed, and if necessary, could divert and move into deeper water if pursued from large predatory trout. So, the fishermen all formed the so called picket fence along the channel, waiting for the enormous trout to start on the "feeding frenzy" that took place most evenings during the summer months.
Billy checked into a small motel about a mile from the river, planning on fishing a number of different rivers and creeks that entered the gigantic Lake Taupo, and of course, Billy wanted to try and become part of the famous picket fence, and land one of the trophy fish of Lake Taupo. Bender had four different Fly rods with him, all 9 footers, and all 4 piece rods for traveling. He had a 9ft -#5, 9Ft-#6, 9Ft-#7, and a power house 9ft -#9, just in case he was able to do some saltwater fishing. Bender had floating lines for all the rods, and sink tips to match all four of the different weight of Fly rods. But for the #9, Bender had a hi-d shooting head, 30 ft. length, tied on to a mono running line. It was a cannon, Bender was an excellent caster, with this outfit he could shoot the line well over 100 ft. Billy choose to try his luck with the #9 the first evening at the mouth of the Waitahanui, since he read that it took a long cast to get out where the large trout were feeding on the baitfish. He bought some local flies at a gas station near the mouth of the river; they had names like, Mrs. Simpson, Hamills Killer, and Grey Ghost, wet flies, or streamer patterns to imitate the baitfish that occupied the mouth of the river.
Billy was ready, with his "Shorty"Simms vest and extra tall Gortex waders, the #9-9Ft TFO rod, and his large arbor reel. Bender waded out to get into position and take his place and become a post within the fence. Just then an Elderly Maori man waded within a foot of Bender and said, "You’re in my spot". Bender thought this must be a joke, but, the old man was not joking, "no," he said, " Your in my spot". Other members of the "fence" told Bender the same thing, you’re in his spot, move down, let him in there, he fishes here every night." OK," Billy said “no problem, I'll move down", the old man smiled and thanked Billy. Then, the old man told Billy what to expect, he said, " the bait fish will start to boil, you'll see them jumping out of the water trying to escape, with the large trout coming out of the water after them. When you see this you must cast around ten feet in front of the big trout, then start stripping your line in". The old man showed Billy his fly, it was just like what Billy had bought at the gas station earlier, a # 4 Grey Ghost. The sun was just setting with the golden glow piercing the horizon, blinding for just a minute the view of all the fence members, then, all you could hear was slashing of bait fish on the surface. Blinded by the golden glow Billy started to cast, the old man told him to wait, “not yet, wait " he said, just then the sun set and they could see again, and what a sight it was. It was like nothing Bender had ever seen in fresh water, it was like a scene from saltwater fishing. Bait fish jumping for their lives, two to three feet above the water, with 7-10lb trout, mouths open in hot pursuit; it was a wild, beautiful sight with the golden hue from the sunset lighting up the background.  Just in front of Bender, 70 feet away, a very large trout came out and porpoised chasing a small school of bait, both the old man and Bender cast at the same time to lead the trout. Bender overshot the target; the old man made a perfect cast, and connected with the leaping Rainbow. It tore off line and headed for the depths, but the old man had years of experience in landing large trout , and with his # 10 fiberglass rod, subdued the monster within minutes, he had it in hand , he clubbed and killed the trophy. Turning to Bender, and said, “we are poor, I need this for my family, thank you for letting me have my spot, we will eat good tonight". The light was fading fast; the old man waded out dragging his 8lb Rainbow through the shallow of the Lake, and then disappeared.
It was Billy's first evening of fishing, in a land very far from home, he had experienced sights he had never seen before, it was the beginning of December, it was warm, and he was trout fishing. Bender knew this was going to be a very special, traveling, and fly fishing in New Zealand; he couldn't wait for day two.

Driving on the other side ( PART 7 )

Billy and Angie were sitting out drinking coffee on the back veranda that over looked the stunning Auckland Bay, talking and taking in some sun. It was late morning, Bender was "licking" his wounds, so to speak, neither wore much in the regards to clothing. Bender was in his plaid boxer shorts , Angie wore a short, white satin bathrobe, that was speckled with red , black, and yellow Chinese symbols, loosely tied at the waist covering mainly her back, her enormous clevage was completely exposed.
Angie was curious what Billy was doing in New Zealand this time of the year, since most of the tourist came after Christmas. Billy took a sip of coffee, sat back in the long lounge chair, his eyes were closed, his head tilted back, taking in the warm Southern Hemispheric sun and said, “Things were going to hell at work, the world economy is on thin ice, I think I told you I work for an investment company? Well, the company I work for is a home grown Montana company. It was started right in Great Falls; the owners still live right in town. Anyway, I'm the youngest of the top executives at our main office in Great Falls. There is the owner, then the CEO, the President, and I am one of four vice presidents. One of my responsibilities is the security of our websites and transactions that take place for our customers in the US on-line. We have offices in 17 states, we have over 184 offices nation wide. In the first week in November, three weeks ago, we were "hacked", we had a security breach that compromised 7 of our biggest clients. The Feds stepped in and fined us, "big money", and told us that we were not up to standards, and that all clients’ information needed to be "encrypted," they gave us four months to get our security up to standards, or, there would be more fines."  Angie said "Oh my god,so they canned you?" She asked,”Well, the executive committee recommended that I take some time off so they could evaluate just what transpired".  It just could not have been at a worst time, most of our clients portfolios are down 40% on average, just happened at a very bad time," explained Bender.
On the balcony above the two sun worshipers, came three females voices in unison, "Angie, who's that gorgeous man sitting next to you in his underwear? Bring him up here, we want to have a closer look," the three Bikini clad beauty's were all bent over the balcony, looking down at the Billy and Angie."Is the old lady up yet?" asked Angie, all three nodded their heads at the same time, the young Brunette said, "she want's to see you, and she said to bring your male friend."Angie shouted, “We’ll be up in a minute, and this one is mine, so hands off", as the three laughed, turned and left, the Blonde said over her shoulder walking away, “better keep an eye on him mate!"
Billy was completely complexed, "who are they? And who is the old lady?" Angie sighed and said, "OK, it's time for the Grand Tour", you better put some clothes on with those three around, or, you could get raped".
Angie looked over the top of her, large, white, oval sunglasses, and said, "You have no idea where you are, this is one of the most famous land marks in the entire country mate, Madame McKenzie's Brothel". Bender looked like he just swallowed bumble bee, "you are, a, you work here?" Sputtered Billy, "NO, I don't work here! I just rent my Apartment , the Blonde is a school mate of mine, and she works here, it's a good deal, and some good laughs , so I figured , why not, I work at a bloody Cafe downtown, I'm a waitress," explained Angie. Billy took a huge breath, and smiled, "OK, onward with the tour".
The two took a narrow, wooded, spiral staircase up a flight to enter the main house from Angie’s Apartment. She explains that the house has been in the McKenzie family for over 100 years, and that the Madame took over the business from her father, who started the Brothel on the edge of the city, around the turn of the Century. The house was built from all native light and dark colored hardwoods from New Zealand, every staircase, doorway and pillar were ornately carved and decorated. There were four levels counting the apartments where Angie resided, with a total of twenty bedrooms, and ten baths. Each room was decorated in plush velvet drapes and matching carpets, in Reds, Purples, and dark Greens, depending on the theme of the room. The Reds and Purples were used for clients to obtain Carnal Knowledge; the Green rooms were living quarters, for the cooks, and maids in addition to the "working girls".
As the two entered the private living room that was located on the "other side of the kitchen", a very crusty voice croaked, "Angie girl, came in here, bring your friend". It was midday, but sitting in a large red leather chair in a light blue nightie, with an enormous glass of what appeared to be milk, sat the infamous Madame McKenzie.  At first Billy was repulsed at such a sight; she sat in a large chair in which she took up most of it with a huge girth. The Madame was wrinkled in all parts of her body, her hair dyed Jet Black, the room was saturated with the stench and fog of cigarette smoke. Her skin was a grayish -white, covered in brownish blotches from head to toe. She asked if they would like to join her for breakfast, a "milk and Scotch”, both declined. Madame McKenzie was a grand dame in her day, but the days were coming to an end. She had seen men from all walks of life past through her doors. She had lived a "hard life" so to speak, not very healthy, drinking all night, and sleeping during the daylight, a life of entertaining others.
Madame McKenzie told Billy to be good to Angie; she was a good girl, not like the girls who worked for her. As Billy and Angie were heading back down the spiral staircase to Angie’s Apartment, Billy suddenly had an urge to be on a Trout Stream, wading through cold, clear water in pursuit of a New Zealand Trout. Billy liked cities, but always in small doses, he was ready to hit the road, he wanted to start fishing.

Driving on the other side ( PART 6 )

Billy awoke to a pounding in his head that he thought possibly could be a monkey banging a bell with a large hammer. As he lay in bed, he thought what type of person would train a monkey for such a wicked deed. He tried to open his eyes, but he was sure they were bleeding, quickly putting his hands to rub his eyes, no blood, thank god. Billy's mouth was powder dry; he couldn't even muster a spec of saliva, Billy thought, why am I being tortured, who put the spot light in my face? Who is doing this to me? Bender had so many questions, where am I? With all of his might, Billy very slowly began to raise his eyelids, when he heard a harsh females voice say, “shut the draaapes ". Billy sat up, only to see an Auburn colored mop, randomly situated on a large white pillow. The voice triggered Benders memory, the sequence of events that transpired the night before were becoming somewhat clearer, as Billy's mind began to race.
Again, the mop spoke, "Mate, Shut the drapes already, I can't sleep! Chriiiiist!” This bolted Billy out of bed and toward the "spot light", which turned out to be the late morning Sun shinning through a enormous window that looked out right above the blue- green colored Auckland Bay. It was stunning, the black , Lava like rough rocks , and the clarity of the Aqua colored water, slithering rhythmically upon the small light brown colored beach below the house. Billy stood transfixed with the absolute beauty that stood before him, for the "Mop" was by his side with the drapes in hand. She was not what one would say dainty, nor petite, but rather Rubenesque. She was a good 5'8, her Auburn colored hair was wild, very full, and wavy, almost one would say "kinky". She stood next to Bender completely naked, the first thing a male would notice about her was the  size of her enormous, full, round , firm breast , that stood out as if they were at a full military salute. Her skin was just a shade above being considered Milk colored, and she was covered head to toe in random, reddish - brown colored, adorable freckles.
" Good morning “some how come from the mouth of the sexually charged Bender.” Billy, are you going to just bloody stand there and look out of the bloody window, or are you going to shut the bloody drapes so I can SLEEP, “exclaimed the mop.” Sorry Babe, I was just stunned by the view, what a spot ", said Bender.” Babe"? " No, it's Angie, remember"? "Oh christ, I just want to sleeeeep", and with that Angie does a belly flop on top of the bed, with Bender not far behind. "Billy, no, no, noooo, you got plenty last night, why do you think I want to sleep, we went at it for hours last night, I'm knackered" Angie pleaded. "There's nothing to eat, and I'm out of coffee, you'll have to walk down to the store and get us something for breakfast, the store is just down the hill and two block's at the first right."Angie was insistent.
Billy found the shower and somewhat came back to life, he dressed and headed out the door in search of nourishment and refreshments. As Bender started his journey downhill, he was struck with two different observations, 1) how all the large, antique houses in this neighborhood were built lavishly from wood. 2) how there was not one view from the street, due to extremely tall wood fences, blocking any indication that one was so close in fact, to the beautiful blue -green colored Auckland Bay. Billy was pondering this dilemma, when he noticed something moving behind him, in a flash Billy felt the canines breaking through skin and into the muscle of his right calve. It was a German Shepard, and it was locked onto Benders leg, growling and moving back and forth like a large flag in the wind. Billy quickly punched the growling dog in the head so hard it not only released but went "flat out", making a horrendous death like noise. But, the canine rolled over and lunged again at Bender, this time going for the throat, Billy caught the dog in mid-air, just below its ears on the thick scruffy part of its own throat. Benders adrenaline was full on, it was a life or death situation, this had taken place out of the blue and within seconds. The attack dog had chosen the wrong opponent, Bender had the dog pinned down against the coolness of the grey cement sidewalk, the dog’s front and back legs kicking in a feverishly rapid pace to no avail. Bender was too strong, he choked and over powered the canine into submission.  Now what, thought Billy, what do I do with this dog, Billy looked up to see one of the very tall wood fences, he instinctively grabbed the snapping canine in one quick motion, and threw it over the fence. Bender could hear the bewilderment of the neighbors voice, in asking his wife, how in the hell did this dog end up in his yard.
Billy purchased some pastries, coffee, some sliced white cheese, and homemade bread, and found his way back to the house to the awaiting naked, and willing Angie. “Sorry "Bender said,” not now, I've have to clean out this wound, I was attacked by a German Shepard on the way to the store". Angie was quickly up, she came out of the bathroom with her hair flying, Hydrogen Peroxide in hand, her bath rope open exposing all, she was not shy.

Driving on the other side ( PART 5 )




It was perfect night for a stroll back to the hotel, calm, 68*, a rare cloudless Spring evening. The sun had just set around thirty minutes earlier,but there was still a faint glow out on the western horizon. Billy was in need of some company, he walked a short distance, and then he could hear the laughter and roar of intoxicated patrons that he could hear even from out on the street.
 He entered the well lit "Pub" that was enormous for a neighborhood bar. He surveyed the area, there was a bar that was shaped a giant "staple”, with both sides being much shorter than the front, most patrons standing and drinking in the front section. The two wings of the staple had bar maids coming and going with trays to accommodate the rest of the tables that were filled with talkative, well lubed patrons.
A quick glance indicated that most, men and women, were enjoying a "pint", a tall glass of local "brew". Many seemed to prefer the light brown colored ales, but, there were a good portion enjoying a lighter color, perhaps a Lager or maybe a Pilsner. Billy would find out later that the ones who did go for the lighter brews, usually drank these with a spot of lime. Not a fresh lime that we are use to seeing, more typically with Mexican beers, but, the lime one uses to make, say a "Tom Collins", the syrupy kind of sweet /sour lime.
Bender decided to "belly up" and join the noisy crowd that insisted on standing, “what do you have mate?" the bar tender barked at Bender. With all the noise, and Billy not accustom to the accent, he couldn't hear what he was being asked. Next to Bender was short ,stalky man wearing a soft, floppy, dark colored hat; he turned to Bender and yelled” What Do You Have Mate?" Bender bent down lower to tell the man "a beer". The near sized gnome of a man slapped Bender on the back and was bent over so far Billy could only see the top of the floppy hat. “Chrrrrist", the man exclaimed "You’re a bloody Yank!" “Ha, good on ya mate!" Billy stood nodding his head, not knowing if this was a good thing or not. The hat wearer yelled “my shout mate, good on ya Yank, what do you have"? Billy was thinking this was maybe the most difficult beer he had ever ordered in an English speaking country. “What ever is good," said Billy, and with that, a large glass filled with an amber color liquid appeared. Billy's new friend clanked glasses and told Billy he was drinking "Nectar", Lions double brown, the best drink in the world , assured  his new friend named Clifford, his friends called him simply "C".
Upon the announcement that Billy was in fact a Yank, others further down the bar came over to Billy just to  make sure he wasn't "dry", pat him on the back or shoulder, and say "good on ya Yank", your money is no good here, " My shout". Bender wasn't clear about some of the terminology, so he asked his new buddy "C" what in fact was a ”shout ". Clifford explained that usually in Pubs, there is such a roar, and a crowd, that one needs to shout at the bar man in order to get a drink, and thus a "shout". When somebody says "my shout", that means they are paying for the drinks. Upon hearing this, Billy had been working on "pint" # 3 when he turned to the whole bar and screamed "MY SHOUT", the pub erupted into clapping , whistling, and screams, "Good on ya Yank", came from all corner's in every direction.  Just then, appeared right in Billy's face, two lovely Lasses, both laughing and giggling, the two women who were in their late twenties each had reddish, glassy eyes, and huge smiles. Billy was trying to decide which one was more attractive, when he heard " why don't you come talk to both of us mate, we love your accent", Billy felt two hands under each of his strong , hairy arms being led to a table at the far end of the bar, by two giggling, adorable, kiwi women.

Driving on the other side ( PART 4 )

Billy choose a waterfront restaurant, and had a table with a view, all the boats in the harbor were lit and twinkled with colors that resembled a reflection of a cloudless night sky. Billy dined alone, sipped on a double Beefeater's and tonic, with a twist of lime. While waiting for his meal, he thought about the night before and his encounter with Ann Hunter, she would be hard to forget. Her skin was fair, lightly freckled, and she has sharp features in her face that Billy adores. Her body was lean, but well muscled, her green eyes radiated like emeralds. Her demeanor is confident, but she draws you in with her smile and ease of talk. Her wavy, full, strawberry blonde hair is never out of place, it gives her a presence of being younger than see actually is, Billy fantasized about seeing it loose and free, possibly on horse back, or walking down a beach on a windless day.
He thought in the morning he would purchase a book about the Trout fishing of New Zealand, and plans his trip south, towards Christchurch, based on where the best fishing would be found.
Bender was an excellent Fly Fisherman, he grew up fishing on his home waters, The Sun River, that flowed from the heart of the Rocky Mountains, then meandered down through the rich Ranch / Farm lands and ended, joining the Big Missouri River at Great Falls.

                                  (The lower Sun River)
The Sun River does not have a huge populations of trout like many other trout streams in Montana. The trout that survive on the Sun, grow to large sizes, much like most of the rivers throughout New Zealand. Billy grew up hearing the stories of the trout fishing in New Zealand, the stalking and casting to individual fish, the need for a precise, pin point cast, to present the fly in a manner not to spook the large trout in "gin clear" water. This is how Bender was raised fishing, on the lower Sun River on his families Farm. The difference seem to be in regards to the size of the trout, In Montana, a good sized trout was anything from 17 inches to a really nice sized one of 22-23 inches. Billy had read and seen the photos of trout in New Zealand, the difference being that in this country, a good trout was from 22 inches to 27-28 inches, a really large trout could go upwards toward 32-34 inches, fly caught in rivers.
Billy cut into the Lobster tail, in which here, they called them Crayfish. It was just caught that day, the freshest he had ever experienced. It melted in his mouth, the flavors were similar to a large prawn, only sweeter, more succulent, maybe one of the finest creatures he had ever tasted. It was accompanied with fresh asparagus, rice pilaf, a 1/2 dozen fresh Bluff oysters. Billy was also enjoying a 1/2 bottle of a local Riesling, the grapes grown on the northern part of the south Island in the Marlborough area, that was fast  becoming internationally known for their wines. The meal and vista were both exceptional, Billy was completely satisfied on both levels, the only aspect lacking, was the company of a gorgeous female. Bender was at this point feeling no pain, he thought it maybe a good plan to see some local color, and stop in and visit a pub for a night cap on his walk back to the hotel.

Driving on the other side ( PART 3 )

Upon his arrival at the Auckland International Airport, Billy had just one thought, to get a room, and sleep for two days straight, he was "knackered". As he was waiting for his bag to show on the long conveyor belt with the rest of the planes occupants, standing, and waiting as well, Bender noticed a small entourage of men with long black coats and dark glasses escorting Ann Hunter out on to the tarmac. Ann was helped on to a “King Air”, that had its engines running and were ready for flight. In less than two hours, Ann would be landing at her family's farm, she would be home. Benders journey was about to begin, once he obtained his bags and went through customs he hailed a cab. A female that was close to 50, asked Bender where he wanted to go. Billy had never seen a female cabby, he was taken back, "well, how about a hotel downtown, clean and quiet, I really need to sleep," said Bender. The female cabby roared off, within seconds the cab was in the middle of morning traffic. Bender had both hands in a death grip holding on to the seat below him; it was the worst E-ticket ride of his life. A female driving on the wrong side of the road was too much after such a long 14 hour flight, Bender was hysterical.
The cabby saw the fear in Billy's eyes from the rear view mirror, "first time to New Zealand mate?" she asked,  Billy told her that indeed it was, The cabby said, " you'll get use to it, driving on the other side, " And he would get use to it, just not this morning, he was relieved to finally get to the hotel. He grabbed his bag and paid the women, then gave her a "ten" US, The female cabby looked upset, "no, you will have to learn, we don't tip cabs here in this country, mate, there is alot your going to learn down here ", she said sternly.
Bender showered, to finally get the travelling dirt off his hairy, athletic physique; he then crawled into the full length king sized bed, and slept for 12 hours straight. When Billy finally did awake it was close to 9:00 pm, he needed a drink, and wanted a good New Zealand Seafood dinner. He inquired at the desk where a good place for both would be within walking distance of the hotel.  The night clerk told him to simply walk down hill toward the docks, there were around ten-twelve great places to eat, and drink. Bender needed to stretch his legs after being so cramped on the plane for 14 hours straight. On his way downtown, he stopped at a music store that had a huge window. In it, there was a replica of "Fleetwood Mac” on stage, and all around the window there where CD's of all their music. Billy finally saw the sign that read,” November 25th, live here in Auckland New Zealand, “Fleetwood Mac", two shows only! Just then, four other people appeared and where looking into the well lit window and talking about the arrangement. Billy noticed that there were two attractive women, and two long haired men. One of the men was very tall, taller than Bender; the other was less than 6ft. In the reflection, Bender could see that the four people standing next to him were in fact Fleetwood Mac, the band. They were very friendly, and told Bender he should come and see them the following night.  Billy turned to walk down the hill; he then stopped and noticed the extraordinary lights that lit up the wharf area of Auckland. He took a long, deep breath, it hit him hard, he was at the very bottom of the Planet, and he was in New Zealand.


Driving on the Other Side ( PART 2 )

                            Auckland, New Zealand
The B 747-400 was on its final descent into Auckland, New Zealand, it was 5:45 am. It was a typical day for this time of the year in Auckland, sunny, with intermittent clouds, 70% chance of rain, 78*, a beautiful Spring day, it was not raining, yet.
Billy and Ann Hunter were both enjoying a light breakfast of juice that consisted of  50% apple, 50% orange, strong coffee, a croissant, with a local "Kiwi" honey,the main entree, a small two egg omelet with the cheese melted off to one side as if the Chef had missed the center mark. Earlier, while the over zealous fight attendant was serving the two occupants of 3 A and 3 B, she had noticed that the tall, lightly freckled beauty was in fact none other than the Ann Hunter, Super model/Actress, most likely the most famous person in all of New Zealand. Ann's face had adorned the covers of magazines world wide, including, Vogue, (French, Italian and US covers), People, on almost every country on the Planet, and last year she was awarded the cover of SI (Sports Illustrated). Ann Hunter was not up and coming, she had arrived.
The petite brunettes left hand was gripping the right shoulder of Benders, while the right hand was waving like a birds wing coming in for a landing. "Katie, Katie, come quickly, you will not believe it, no come here, it's Ann Hunter! “Before Bender could blink, now, there were two uniformed clad brunettes smiling in the aisle next to him. Ann Hunter looked up, eye brows raised and said, “Girls, if you don't mind, we are having breakfast, I'll sign autographs on my way out". The young Flight attendant blurts out,“oh, we are so sorry, it's just that, well, we didn't mean to bother, we will see you on the way out then", Ann smiled and raised her head slightly, the two disappeared behind a aqua colored curtain protecting the contents of the galley.
Bender felt small, unimportant, he came to the conclusion that this is a good thing, for back home in Great Falls he was the man. At age 34, he was Bachelor of the year, he was number four man at one of Montana 's biggest home grown company's, DA Davidson, known all through the US, and all through the international money markets. He had clawed his way to gain the respect of all the large Brokerages in New York, London, and Hong Kong. 

Growing up on a small Farm/ Ranch 23 miles outside of Great Falls in a place called "Sun River", Bender was a legend. While in collage in Bozeman, at Montana State University, he was a star Guard on the basketball team that for the first time in over 15 years, not only won the Big Sky Title, but, went into the second round at the NCAA tournament losing to a powerful UCLA team, that did indeed go to the finals, only to lose to UNC University of North Carolina.
 At 6'3 and a powerful but lean 205 lbs., Bender was also a cowboy, he rode bulls and broncs, and his senior year got third place in the bull riding event at the National Championships held in Bozeman.
Tall, well built, with dark curly hair, Billy Bender was a big fish in a small pond, some would say, a whale in a mud puddle. But Billy was also very bright, he took his education seriously, he was top of his class in Business and Economics, and was highly recruited by all the big firms throughout the Rocky Mountains, and most in the Northwest. By the time he graduated, most people thought that Billy Bender "had the tiger by the tail".
Bender was staring at a half eaten omelet; he'd eaten the part with the cheese, when Ann put a piece of paper on his tray. " Here is my address and Tel/cell #  where you can reach me , I'll be staying at my family's farm outside of Christchurch, I don't know your plans, but you can always come and stay there.' she said, Bender was surprised, it caught him off guard, he said " thanks, I'm not sure what I'm going to do, I kind of left in a hurry, I really don't have any plans, just some Fly Fishing, traveling, sight seeing, I don't really know". Ann laughed, " must be nice, no plans, well, if you want to Fly Fish , on my family's farm is one of the best streams in the entire country, I've caught rainbows up to twelve pounds on Dry Flies". Bender was taken back, " you Fly Fish too, what don't you do?" asked Billy. Ann explained that fly fishing was a family tradition, she started tying flies at the age of 10, and starting "shooting" at age twelve, and that she was the proud owner of a custom fit side by side "Purdy" made in England.
For the first time in Billy Benders life, he'd met a women, which within a few hours had absolutely mesmerized him. Billy would not loose the paper handed to him from Ann, he was going to make sure, he would, again see, Ann Hunter

Driving on the other side ( PART 1) Fiction

Billy Bender sat in aisle seat 3 A, he was curled like a kitten, shoes somewhere below his seat. He was facing the window, drooling on his pillow as he snored, and respired unrythmicly every 25-35 seconds. A flash of light pierced the memory of the weary-eyed traveler, for in 3 B, the young, sharp featured; well groomed, strawberry blonde had just raised the blind. It was sunrise some where over the Pacific, Billy just awoke to realize the tingling pain he felt in his legs, and the throbbing in the front of his brain were due partly because he was on a flight to New Zealand. The other reason, he quickly concluded, was from the tiny bottles, with pictures of Beefeater's from England, they sounded like chimes as they rolled off of his lap and fell somewhere below him near his shoes.
Billy, with hands raised toward the ceiling, stretched out as well as one can in the confines of the long narrow seats." My god, what I'd pay for a real bed right now", exclaimed Bender. The Strawberry blonde turned to Billy and said, “you had quite a sleep, you were out for a good three hours". As Billy turned, he was thinking of a reply, then it hit him, my sleep apnea, I must have kept this gorgeous women up all night, and my hair, I must look like death; Bender was not use to looking anything less than GQ. He felt ashamed as he glanced toward the tall, wavy haired beauty. She was in her early twenty's, thin, but shapely, he saw her when she first sat, minimum of 5 ft. 10, perhaps even taller, and an absolute "knockout".
"Ann Hunter" she said, " I'm not sure you remembered", Bender turned to the young beauty and replied, " yes, I do, your from Christchurch, correct", She flashed her bright whites, outlined in freshly applied red crimson, " why, yes, you do remember, I'm surprised, you were hitting the sauce pretty hard last night". Bender sighed, “yes I did, and you are returning from a reading in Hollywood for a part in a film being made in your home country, correct?" Ann was nothing less than charming, she smiled even larger, her eyes sparkled and she said,
“That’s right, and I did get the part, I'll be the Princess in a major movie, the "Lord of the Rings". "Ah, Very nice, now I remember, “Bender replied, “It’s all coming back to me". Ann was facing Billy with her sharp chin resting on the back of her hand, her piercing green eyes staring right into his red white and blue, road map of Ohio like eyes, and said, " and you,  are William H. Bender, hailing from the "electric city” of Great Falls Montana",  she slightly laughed as she finished. Bender, flashed for a second, to see the name inscribed on his door, at D.A. Davidson, he then remembered, why in fact he was taking the long journey to the end of the world. It was November 24th, the year was 2008, the world’s economy was in utter, complete, despair, the worst economic disaster since the great depression, and Billy Bender wanted to vanish.