Monday, January 26, 2009

Tales from the Field

As a boy growing up in North Dakota, hunting and fishing was like drinking water. From the time you could walk you're wanting to go hunting with daddy. So, over the course of thirty-five years, I'm pretty condfident I have a few stories that might bring a smile to a Mon. morning start. Starting today, I'm dedicating Mon. morning posts to "Tales from the Field"...a look at the campfire stories of a child, teenager, adult, and man. Sounds pretty dramatic eh?

My life from a very young age was all about archery, pheasant hunting, fishing, water skiing, and baseball. My first real memory I can think of relating to hunting was a rebellion against the system. I have a brother three and half years older, who always got to do everything with dad. They were going hunting, I didn't get to go, I swallowed a marble, it got stuck in my throat, dad "fish-hooked" it out, I got a "whoopin'", and I still didn't get to go hunting. Although I failed to overthrow the system, it set the tone for future hunting trips. Leaving me behind wasn't an option anymore...they were too afraid of what I might do.

So my earliest memories, when I was in the 5 yr. old range, are full of sitting in a tree-stand with dad, carrying an empy short-barreled .22 cal. rifle, and driving for pheasants. Not driving like you might be thinking, but actually driving dad's "monster" truck along the draws and tree-rows for pheasants. Dad would drop it in low and I would keep it going in the direction he left it. He and my brother could walk faster than the truck would move, but who cares. I was driving! Wish there was an accident or Nascar experience to "relive", but I didn't want to lose my priviledges. Accidents and Nascar experiences didn't come to much later, but believe me, they were there.

Anyways, thinking about how I grew up and how we're losing our kids to TV, video, phones, computers, and anything else "techie", don't be selfish with your time in the field...take a child and get them started loving the outdoors.

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