Twist and Shout

Twist and Shout
Life is never straight (Joey Kulkin photo)

Friday, August 3, 2012

Vignettes from Vermont: Lewis Micou's Vermont Fishing Tale

Lewis Micou of Medina, Ohio, via Buena Vista, Virginia, and Bennington

BENNINGTON -- Lewis Micou caught the biggest brown trout Vermont ever saw. He says he did, and he says the Bennington Banner verified this truth by plastering a picture of him and his fish and his young daughter on the front page one July day in 1969.

"10 pounds and 29 inches long. I caught it in the Battenkill," Micou said in a Virginia drawl that takes a few seconds to crawl off his lips.

The Battenkill.

Soon as he said Battenkill my mind jumped to that summer day in 1997, maybe '98. I told Lewis Micou of Buena Vista, Virginia, who graduated from the University of Virginia, about the day I swam in the Battenkill with a reporter colleague by the name of Andrew and how I lost my favorite ring during that romp in the water. It was a thick silver ring with yin-yang symbols all the way around. No ring has felt more right on my finger. I went back to the Battenkill 3 or 4 times and dove to the bottom near the spot where the yin-yang ring slid off my left-middle finger, but I never did find it.

Lewis Micou moved to Bennington after serving in the military and got a job as a chemical engineer at General Cable in Pownal, when Pownal had but 7 or 8 houses maybe, some of them with dirt floors no doubt, back when Green Mountain Racetrack served the best lunches, he said, and a racetrack buddy of his would whisper in his ear which horses to bet.

"None of them did come in though."

He continued: "When I moved to Bennington no one would talk to me because they didn't understand what I was saying." But then he caught that 10-pound, 29-inch brown trout in the Battenkill, and the Bennington Banner plastered his picture on the front page a few days later, and then everyone wanted to be fishing buddies with Lewis Micou.

Today Lewis Micou and his wife live in Medina, Ohio. I told Lewis I would try to check the Bennington Banner archives from that July day in 1969 to verify his brown trout tale. Seconds later, his wife bought a glass necklace with a mermaid diving to the bottom of the sea.

If only that mermaid was around to dive for my yin-yang ring.

UPDATE: I just found a unique Micou Family Narrative HERE