Dear Water Walker, 

I hope this letter finds you well. Though it has been a while since we’ve seen one another, I still remember fondly those halcyon early days of our non-consummated flirtation: those first sensual flicks of my sickle tail in your general direction, the soft plop of your fly on the outskirts of my zone. The fin-titty-lation was unbearable. The long interludes between our animalistic encounters only served to increase the tension. 

Before we met, I was swimming around wrecks with a bad crowd, looking for any live crab that came my way. Many Water Walkers came and went, in an endless procession of meaningless one-crab stands. I didn’t value myself, or my body. That life could only lead to one place: the bottom of a Water Walker’s cooler. Your dogged determination and constant, unfaltering, failure helped me understand what a permit was really worth. Thank you for that. I will never forget it, or compare myself to a jack ever again.

We certainly had some ups and tumultuous time together. Do you recall Mexico when I spit the hook at the boat and, later that night, the Federales found you passed out on the beach wearing nothing but a sombrero, gripping an empty bottle of mescal in one hand with a dozen Mexican Oxycontins shoved up your anus? Or how about the time in Belize, when I broke you off on the coral head and you tried to fight every Water Walker in the bar in San Pedro? Do you remember being in the hospital for five days afterwards? Do you remember all the dental reconstructive surgery? Because I do. What about the countless times in the lower Keys when I would show up, just to leave without saying goodbye after a confrontation? Do you remember where in the Everglades you buried the body of that attendant from the Cheeca Lodge? All he did was ask you if you caught anything, for God’s sakes. He was just a beautiful, brown Water Walker that didn’t deserve to die.

Even with this behavior, I could’ve forgiven you if it weren’t for all the tailing loops. You have spent so much money, time, and emotional capital to chase me across the far-flung corners of the world. Don’t you think you should at least learn how to fucking cast? I mean really, you weak-wristed, walter-waking pussy. I can’t even begin to count the times I was willing to eat whatever you were throwing at me, and you just couldn’t perform. In case you were wondering: no, it does not happen to everyone. There are plenty of Water Walkers out there with big enough rods to put a permit in its place—especially when it’s begging for it. 

This was never going to be easy, but we both knew this outcome was inevitable. Our seductive dance must now come to an end. Much like a sandbar shifting with the changing of the currents, so has our meaning to each other. We will never have what we once had, or what we could have had in a perfect world. No matter how many small, schoolie permit you find mudding at the end of your rod tip, it will never be the same as our tortured tryst. 

With my giant eyes, I can see into your soul and now know that it is as empty as your fly boxes. 

In conclusion, please know that it is definitely you, and not me. 

With continued indifference, 

That Goddamned Permit

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