26 MARCH 1954, Page 18

Country Life

WHEN we called in at the shop in the village to allow my companion to get his fishing per- mit, the sun was shining and three old men were leaning on a whitewashed wall across the way enjoying the warmth. It Seemed a fine day, but as we went up the valley, turning with the road along the side of the lake, we came into a wind that blew from the east. Somewhere we had lost the sun. A mist of cloud drifted overhead and the water of the lake was rough. We carried on until we came to the stream feeding the lake and got out to put our tackle together. The wind con- tinned to blow and our fumbling fingers were frozen. It was useless to hope for a rise and after half an hour of pretence we took down our rods and prepared to go. Before we left we were joined by two hardy men wearing old army greatcoats. They had been higher up in the hills—a three-quarters of an hour tramp, 'said one—and they had caught trout. They showed us their handsome green and yellow fish but our enthusiasm was gone. Today it was an uncivilised business and our blood was too thin to stand the cold.