I recently chatted with my parents about some oversea traveling experience. To me, traveling is not an easy thing, it’s quite a stressful business where so many uncertain things will be encountered during the travel. Quite opposite, my parents are really an adventurer type of people. They love travel! They had once told me even during my “diaper era”, they were hauling everything to lakes or mountains… My parents probably think it’s strange that their son is less exploratory than themselves. Ha..not really, the adventure I like it more stationary. Something you need to observe more closely, more slowly, “hit and go” adventure has it own fun, but rarely appealing to me. I have to agree, though, that some people are more “capable of bearing frustrations” than others. Some enjoy the uncertainty more than others. I have several friends that are really enjoy those kinds of uncertainties in life. Me, as the opposite, I am a “household” traveler. I like travel, but I like to travel to somewhere that I can experience more in depth. Knowing nature, culture and people live there.
Couple years ago, I have a chance to visit a good friend in Japan. I brought my fly rod and managed to catch my first amago trout in a beautiful mountain creek. During this visit, there were not much touring around. This is just a short visit and I want it to be simple. This trip, however, probably is the best foreign traveling experience in my life, to date. Fishing was great, but it has less to do with the travel experience. I think the main reason may come from the people I met. My friend’s families and their inspiring life styles. I had a great honor to stay with her family for several days. During the stay, I had a chance to observe what a normal Japanese house looks like, what a regular life could be, what do they think about their society. Those things are so great! I really love to experience life stories than seeing famous monuments or famous sceneries. I like little things in the daily life. Those little things and trivia stories have it’s potential to enlighten me. For instance, we went to a mountain village, I saw a young man work in a shop, he has a fancy hair style. It’s really hard to make a connection between his fancy hair style and the farmer job he was doing…We chatted with him and bought some fresh vegetables. He probably think I am interested in those watermelons but could not afford it. (I was taking a photo of those beautiful watermelons). At the end of the check out, he gave us one watermelon as a gift. This is the kind of story that will always warm me up. One of the many trivia that I treasured during my travel.
Fishing, this life experience hunting is just like a typical mountain creek fishing. It’s slow and more stationary, but it gives me “more feel” than big water fishing. You find a spot by carefully observe the creek, the swirl behind a rock, the flat run with deep dark depression, the grassy bank with wild flowers on top etc… a lot of trivial that I really appreciate to be in a little creek.
I am a biologist grew up with a fishing rod in my hands. I have been fortunate enough to embrace my love of art and science in my career. Most of my free time were well spent in the nature, either studying bird behavior or chasing variety of fish with fly rods. My favorite art medium is watercolors, I love the natural and spontaneous feel created by watercolor pigments. I am currently a post-doctoral research fellow at Harvard University. Welcome to my website. Mark