Email from Mr Leszek Delag, 15 Feb 2011

To Mr.Richard Wynne,

Dear Richard,

Thank you very much indeed for your hugely enjoyable and uplifting letter! May I say that this document alone is worthy of print and framing, for I have not stopped marvelling yet, at the exploits and colourful career of the Late V.C-W!  A larger-than-life character indeed..you should be proud to have an ancestor such as he! I do believe I envy you sir!!

I have also received a kind letter from Dr. Adam Brown [of Assynt Angling information] and have responded.. in essence; I will try and take some photos of the reel this weekend; also I will try and photocopy the letter of receipt and send them on to you by the wonders of this modern email technology! Please feel free to print, publish or file as you wish..

As to the reel itself; may I tell you something?  Quite a few decades ago now, I happened to mention to a certain fellow that I always wanted to buy a Hardy “Elarex” reel because (a) it was an especially beautifully made reel and (b) such a reel-because of the high sums they
commanded-was to me, a “Pearl-of great-price”. (See the Good Book for detailed explanation).  The Gentleman replied that, he indeed owned one of those-a very special one, because it was one of the earliest ones made- and had caught many a good fish with it..but although he no longer used it, was reluctant to part with it, probably I imagine, for personal reasons. I sympathised with him, thought no more about it and we left it at that.

Now that should have been the end of the story but..about a year later, we met again by chance, and he said..”Look here, do you still want that reel..I mean, are you still looking for one?” (an Elarex) I replied, Well, yes..that is if the price was affordable.. I recall his words as yesterday, they were..”Well, I’ve been thinking..I know how you look after things and treasure them..and I don’t really need it any more..so..what about you giving me £x for it?”  To cut a long story short, we exchanged and shook hands..and the deal was done.   However, there was one odd proviso.. He sold it to me on the one strict condition-that I never resold it as long as I lived!

I don’t know what that reel meant to him, but it must have had some special personal connections to somewhere-or somebody..who knows?  I have loved that reel and treasured it for it is a joy to use, resisting along the way many very lucrative offers to buy it-and will continue to do so for as long as I am On God’s Earth, for I made a promise and will honour it. I will tell my son about you and maybe in the fullness of time, you will be hearing from him.. but not for a while yet..-I hope!

With many regards,

Yours, most sincerely,

Leszek Delag