Friday, September 16, 2011
Archery season opened and while my oldest and I were present and accounted for early Saturday morning, the deer were not cooperative in the slightest. But if you have ever been very still in the woods as night turns to day, you know how rewarding it is to hear the owls begin to hush up as the daylight grows while the crows and other day critters begin their shifts and make the day all noisy. It was a fine morning.
We took a bit of a break and then the afternoon brought the first dove shoot of the year. Now, while deer hunting is mostly a solitary and quiet affair, a good dove shoot involves quite a few folks heading into an open field and doing a fair amount of socializing while spotting birds and yelling 'heads up' directions to the other hunters as the birds come in. It's a remarkably loud and fun way to expend a whole pile of gunpowder at some very fast-flying birds. I ought to mention that despite the number of hunters and guns, it's a very organized endeavor with some basic rules to keep everyone safe.
Our younger boy came along and this year was promoted to full gun-bearing hunter as opposed to previous years when he came along for the ride, mostly, and to gain some experience. We also had Lilla, the new Boykin, along to see what she could do. The boy was equipped with a single shot 20 gauge and minimal experience with moving targets. Lilla brought a nose and some serious energy.
One thing to note about doves is that they seem to have magic in their flying. Some come through straight and slow and make you shoot way too far ahead of them....some come through at what seems like 100 miles an hour and manage to execute 90 degree turns just as you pull the trigger at a point in the air where the bird no longer is. I dare say more shotshells are spent on doves, per bird, than any other game animal.
But it was a good shoot with more than enough doves to miss and still allow most folks to get their limits. I was especially proud of my little man who collected 8 birds with that single shot. That's no mean feat for a first-timer. And as for Lilla, she did a fine job of retrieving birds and finding a few in some mighty thick cover that otherwise would have been lost. I have to say, I'm loving these spaniels.
And I'll do my best to make the next post about mass transit issues, the decline of print media, or something other than hunting.
Have a great weekend!
Tuesday, August 30, 2011
Thursday, August 18, 2011
Sunday, March 7, 2010
A similar line exists further up in the estuaries where the marshes are. On good spring tides with a stiff wind behind them, all but the highest portions of the marsh are underwater and anything floatable is brought up out of the grass and flung along a line where the water finally stops and retreats. This tide line in the marsh is off the beaten path and, unlike beaches, never gets cleaned up. There’s a lot of stuff out there. The result is something of a history lesson – you’ll find bottles for soft drinks that haven’t been made in years or see old glass bottles and new plastic ones for the same product, for instance. I walked up on a dead mule out there years ago. No clue where that thing floated in from, but he was history.
But I said these walks are something of a history lesson and these messages were snapshots of different times. The older bottled message was written in pencil on a fragment of stiff paper. It’s very faint, but as near as I can tell the address listed doesn’t exist anymore and the phone number belongs to someone else. The more recent message we found a couple of months ago and this one was written on computer and includes the sender’s email address. This one wished us a Happy Valentine’s Day 2004. If you, or someone you know, are email@example.com, we love you too. Since it’s very legible, I’ll reseal it and set it adrift again with an added note.
I find these messages special, too, because someone once, for reasons of their own, decided to write a note, seal it up, and fling it, with some sort of hope, to the current. It makes you wonder who they are (or were), and what was going on in their lives when they sent that message out. In my mind they’re good people, but who knows?
I think to some degree that’s how Savannah got me on board with this blog. Maybe this is our little message in a bottle. Hope you enjoy.
Please write me at 1XXX Lee Street and tell me you found the bottle. Phone 264-XXXX. Date 10-26-71.
Pete Smith (peace sign)"