July fades, August begins.   Into exile I must go, failed I have.   Well, into exile anyway.   It is that time of year.   Fewer people want to go fishing.   It’s hot.    I can coast until Fall.  It’s a summertime slowdown that happens every year.   If I can get someone to go once a week, that’s fine.   If not, I can wait until the weather changes and more people will want to go.    Oh, to fast forward to November.   My mother was talking about how cool it’s been at night in Ohio.   It would be nice to have it here.   

“The New Normal”, the world is a funny place.    I did start getting back out.    Amid reports the virus is fairly strong, I was staying in but my pals are going out and they asked me to come along.   So, I’m starting to go.    I haven’t had a cold in 15 years.    I like my chances.    The number of cases connected to me, still two.    It was at one for a long time.     “People who know people”, it is up to about 20.    I’m not very impressed.   I’ve said it before.     I got people stirred up the last time.   Got some people thinking.   What if the six-foot rule was ten instead?    The year 2020 has been an interesting one.   Jason Moore’s funeral:  Still hasn’t happened.   Because of the virus.   They have now set a date.  

Moving on, not going to spend a lot of time talking about that.    It’s been a topic long enough.

Fishing:   The schedule is finally lighter, right on schedule.   This slowdown usually lasts through September.     Fine by me:  I can wait until the fishing gets better.    As quickly as I said it’s that slow season, the phone rang four times.     Not busy but not dead either.  

One client, a long-time client, commenting on sports on his arrival.   He is against them all these days.    He and I agreed:   They’re killing their fan base.    Over protests?   It’s called a press conference.    You want to disgrace yourself and dishonor our countrymen over your protest?    How these sports allow it, I’ll never know.   Make them stay in the clubhouse for the anthem if they intend to kneel.    Set up their press conferences for their protest. 

Days off:   Three days working on a south shore launch.   Digging out all the seaweed, inserting a couple thousand pounds of shell.   Picking up garbage.    A chore.   But that Miguel launch is the nicest it has ever been.   We swept the seawall to finish.     We lit all the dead branches on fire.     Very good progress for that location.   No question: The Miguel launch looks the best it ever has. You saw the pictures. Trees improved. Seaweed: Gone. 3000 pounds of shell, deposited. All the trash, picked up. Shell deposited to level out the root area. Two loads of shell to the house. Cement project, delayed to today. Huge rain. Best of the year. The original vines, part trimmed, the rest get pruned today. A very busy three days. Lots of progress. After a couple hours work this morning, projects are complete.  No question, it is the best it has ever looked.    The seaweed gone, a lot easier to walk through there.     Shell on the ground, it should keep it nice for a long time.    A lot of work done.  Another big improvement:   Two months worth of garbage picked up.    Amazing how people just throw their trash on the ground.    I don’t get it.  It is such a beautiful place.     We did the work.    It looks really good.  

Days off, nothing like making a big breakfast and a full pot of coffee.    I do eggs every day.    I did egg whites for like a year.   The last two store trips, I just got regular eggs.   My cholesterol reading was better and I’ve added in Red Yeast Rice, a tip I got that should also help.   I’m about six months on “Cholestoff.”   No red meat for six months.   I’m getting old.   

Days off:  Over to 12 Fathom.  Filling bags with rattles, bagging worms and four hours of pouring lunker lotion.   Back home, back to fishing.   The Bailey brothers.   Bridge jigging, not good.    Moved to the flats:   Huge action.    Big ladyfish, big trout.   Finished off at the silver trout hole, part of the plan.  Silver trout, the biggest they have been all year.   Filled a cooler for Craig to make fish spread.    It was a good day.   Would have been a great day if we spent the fish hour and a half on the flats.   But, we wanted pompano.     Craig caught a nice pompano at the silver trout hole.   Unfortunately just one, but they took home 60 pounds of fish.   Came back to take a guy fishing. He had to postpone. Looks good. Got back a day early. A paid day off. The guy I came back for had to postpone.

One more trip and then 12 days off.    Then a week off and two trips.   Plus whatever is added between now and then.   As good as it’s been more people should be wanting to go.   For dead of summer, it has been pretty good.    It can definitely be a lot worse this time of year.  

Witnessing:  People who are blasé about earning money.   Not naming names.   Just an observation.   They like to earn the money but they aren’t all that excited about how easy it is to earn it.    If it was me, I’d be dancing in the streets.    

The virus hasn’t made people better drivers.   Obnoxious, impatient people are all over our roads.  It’s quite disappointing.   Why?   Someone honking their horn when they are all by themselves.   Really?   I’m not sure where people learned what they know.  

2020:  A big year for death.    Lillian Patterson, now gone.  She was the guts to the minor league umpiring program.     Mark’s mother.    He has been up in Indiana for that.   Age:   A lot of people have just reached the end.  

Lightning hockey. Up 4 to 0.   Good until I find out, it’s an exhibition game.    But, then they won the next two games that do count.  They are off to a good start.  

I was an umpire.   You will never hear me attack an umpire.   You were president.   How can you undercut the guy who is president now?     I don’t understand.   I just don’t.   I guess I am different than other people?    Thoughts like these make it hard to write the Blog.   I could just quit.  

It’s good to see umpires on TV again.    Strange with the game being shut down until just ten days ago.    Very strange.   

Death sentence for Boston marathon bomber overturned.    Who is behind that one?   I remember I fished Fort Desoto that day.  We went to lunch at Billy’s after we got done.   It came on the TV.    One of the guys with me fishing that day, his wife was in Boston.     He tracked her down pretty quick but you could see the alarm on the guy.   

Onward and upward.   One item that didn’t arrive: Amazon sent that and everything else that was in that order. I have duct tape for a lifetime now.  Now, my cooler hinges are here.   That cooler, useful during parties.  Ordered a lot from them the past month.    Got my new printer and it is working great.   Got all this other stuff for around the house.   No more orders planned.    They get stuff to me fast.   The printer took a week.  Nearly everything else arrives in one day.   

Already mentioned.   Hockey resumes.  Baseball has been going for a full week.    They still report all these record numbers of the virus.     The third person I know that contracted it happened yesterday.   He announced he had it a month ago.   All three people are fine.    Went through it and it’s over.    It looks like to me, the strong survive and the people with other problems are at risk to die from it.    So, what does that tell you? 

The computer:  I have had for about four years.    It started running slower.    I looked at that for days.   Tried different stuff.   Finally did a system restore and that brought the speed back.   It isn’t the best but it does everything I need it to.   I hope it lasts another three or four years.     Amazing how it cost less than my first laptop 20 years ago.    And the quality, much better than back then.    Still friends with my “tech support” gal from back then.    Worked her hard.    Bad hard drive.    Things sure have changed.   I can do a lot of my stuff on my phone now.   I could probably do even more if someone showed me how to.  

Brian Richards, finally talked to him yesterday.   He couldn’t come up with any good suggestions.   “It’s time for you to buy a new computer.”   That is kind of what I figured.   This one is still working.   But it is getting annoyingly slow.     So, the next purchase.   A new laptop.   This one is a Dell and it has been good.   What to get?    I’ll do some research.  

Passwords and Security Checks:   Unreal.    Half the time they don’t work right.   My passwords are good enough.    You are telling me they are not.    Why make it harder than it needs to be?    Why make it hard at all?    Make things way easier.    It could be done.  During the process I was forced to change browsers.  That’s why I got into the password realm.    I got through it but it was annoying. 

A theme:   August here, we have survived a lot of summer.   The power bill shows for sure, it’s summer.     Looking forward to that bill dropping by $100 a month in October.   I’ve turned the air conditioner up four degrees.  I’m curious how much that will drop the monthly bill.  

Deaths, Wilford Brimley died and no one said a thing.   It will probably be the same thing for me.   I liked him.    Anyway, so long, sorry I never met you.

Trips, a little on the light side after a great three months:   It’s special request time, part of it.   Pompano.   The action trips are still easy.   The trout closure makes them easy to find and catch.   Changes to regulations, I’ve heard my input was utilized.   The did my exact suggestion for flounder.    Dropped from ten flounder 12 inches long to five flounder, minimum size 14 inches.     That’s a good rule change.    In time, maybe they will get the rest of them right.  

A third mention.   Hockey resuming, something to watch.  The Lightning won their first game, Shootout against Washington.   Big win.   They are in the playoffs no matter what.   But, they win everything before then, they will be seeded the highest.   Last year, a first round loss.  Unexpected and very disappointing.   They look good.   The next game, a real battle with Boston.   Up 2 to 0, they let two goals for a tie.    Then they looked good but had trouble scoring.   There is so much luck involved.   That puck bounces and rolls.    They are talented but some of it is how the puck bounces.   Tyler Johnson puts them up 3 to 2.    With two minutes left in the third period.    Hold on for victory #2.  

Baseball, I couldn’t care less.   I just don’t watch it.   The virus stuff hit Miami and hit St Louis.    If it hit more teams, that season is over.    I find it funny.    Their athletes.   They get the virus they are most likely to recover the best.   No fans.   So what?

A couple of good bookings.   During what I thought was the dead season, picked up a few.    It happens.    It has been a good year.   Other guys have suffered.   Dropped in another big trip in two weeks.  Three people.   Dropped in two more at the end of the month.  Some time off between the next trip and those ones, more concrete going in at the house.    Other projects are possible.  I’m doing fine.  

My mother:    Still doing fine.    Talking to her, we have tested her memory.  And she has done well.   Not what she used to be but still good.   

Book 5 is into final tinkering.     I have all of cousin Cindy’s notes to incorporate.    Only two people have seen it.    This one does not publish until life changes.    An award winner.    A pre printing means copies sent to Hollywood (at their request).    Book 5, the story, with the family story might make me very wealthy.   Book 4 should have been more popular.  It did well but there are 1000 people I thought would want it that I still haven’t heard from.   Then again, no one is buying pompano teasers either.   A few of my flies have sold.   And some other inquiries.     But overall, book and teaser sales have been poor.   I do what I do.  Take it or leave it.   “An American, The Neil Taylor Story.”  Elaborated on some of the old girlfriends.    I get through the next trip and I go back to work on the file.    Cousin Cindy’s suggestions incorporated.   This one is going to be double the length of The Professional Baseball Umpire.     That conversation with Mom, it is in Book #5.    She had very interesting things to say.   About me.   The family.    Things never said before.    She will never read this book.  

Daily life:  Good.   I’m ready for summer to wind down.  It has been HOT.    Lower power bills would be nice but it would be nice to go outside any time of day and not be soaked.    It’s that humid.   It will get there.   It’s well into August.    Peak hurricane season is weeks away.  What will we get this year?  

I hope you are doing as well as I am.   Life is good.  

Neil Taylor

Full time kayak fishing guide, Neil was an advocate for conservation since before the time he started guiding.Outdoor writer, speaker and radio show host, Neil connected closely with Captain Mel Berman and did many positives with Mel to promote ethical angling. After Mel passed away, Neil managed www.capmel.com and eventually became that web site’s owner.
Neil Taylor

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