It sounds simple enough I know. As an experienced angler I have caught fish all over the world.
I have also tried and failed many, many times to catch fish in Portugal.
I am definitely not alone because I recently received this from a very experienced friend who was asked to give some advice on how to improve my chances of success.
“Attached is my “paper” on fishing, and how to fish, in Portugal, by an expert who has so far failed to catch a fish in Portugal, (except a dead one by your boat).”
Although it is nice to know that I am not alone it is still very disappointing.
Another friend who used to keep his fishing tackle ready in his vehicle so that he could seize any fishing opportunity at a moments notice told me recently that he was so disillusioned that he had gone home and dismantled his rods and fishing tackle and put them back in the box for two months or two years he really didn’t know how long it would be he said.
Why is this? Are we sticking to some UK fishing dogma and refusing to adapt? No.
Are we fishing in the wrong place? No.
Are there fish there? Yes.
So what is the solution????
I have begun to believe that we must fish exactly in the same style as the local Portuguese, with the same fishing tackle, fishing techniques and bait and at the same time and locations.
Come to think about it! This is also an analogy for how to make friends with Portuguese people in your local area.
Most of my ex-pat friends originally wanted to make friends with their Portuguese neighbors and local people but have failed and have fallen back into the ex-pat clique.
If you truly want to make friends locally and integrate with your neighbors. Ask yourself the sort of questions that I asked myself about fishing!
Such as …….
Are we sticking to some UK fishing dogma and refusing to adapt? Probably yes.
If you think to yourself “they” don’t know what they are doing or “they” should do things like this. Then you are probably fooling and frustrating yourself because they wont.
Why should they.
The Portuguese people will carry on being Portuguese even if they confuse you by speaking English. They are Portuguese people at home and it is you who has to change.
Are we fishing in the wrong place? If you go to a social event like a fiesta or wedding. Don’t go at a time that fits around your favorite TV program. Go when everyone else does even if it means eating at 11pm or listening to music that you are not familiar with.
Are there fish there? Yes there are lots of Portuguese People who want to be friends (you will occasionally find someone who doesn’t) The thing to remember is that most of us find friendship with people who have a similar age group, outlook, interests, sense of humor or club membership.
A little Portuguese language will go a long way in helping you to integrate and knowing a little of the language will help you understand the issues of the day and how they effect your Portuguese neighbors.