trick to this," said Holmes. He tied a "toebiter" nymph to his
leader. Then he searched the ground and found a large leaf. He stripped line
from the end of his rod and placed it in carefully arranged coils on a rock in
the stream. The nymph he put upon the leaf. Then, cautiously, he released it
into the current. It spun and bobbed downstream toward a pool; the coils of
line slipped off the rock. When the leaf reached the pool he lifted the rod
tip, and the nymph fell off. Immediately there was an explosion in the pool and
Sherlock Holmes was into a very heavy trout.
It was an
incredible performance. I had never heard of such a ploy. It was a fight by
remote control, for he could not see the pool entirely and had to handle the
fish by feel alone. He paid out line but made no sudden movements which would
further alarm the trout. Steadily, expertly, he guided the fish from under
banks and logs. "There's a good lad," he said as he led the trout to
is," Holmes said, "takes a long time." But he was in control. And
he was getting back line. He used his wrist to counterattack the runs, turning
it first this way, then that, then up, then down. As he worked the trout, he
American doing here?" he wanted to know.
I told him the
happened to your Mennen Williams?"
Yes, I had.
Williams was Under Secretary for African Affairs.
in the nose, didn't he? Some farmer in Lusaka. Right at the airport, they
say." The trout made a savage run. Holmes fed it line, brought things under
" 'Course you
don't run around saying things like, ' Africa for the Africans' and expect the
whites to love you, do you?" Short, sharp tugs by the trout to no avail.
Holmes was talking like a barber cutting hair.
I explained that
Williams had corrected himself. What he really meant was Africa for all
Africans, blacks and whites.