Wednesday, December 30, 2015


The little woman and I live very withdrawn lives these days. We don’t visit others and they don’t visit us. Yesterday morning was a rare exception to that.

When the Mighty Dachshund began looking toward the front of the house and barking at about eight o’clock, we found my stepson and his eight-year-old daughter outside putting on their hunting togs, getting ready to head over the hill to try and ambush a deer. Of course, my wife was appalled that he would take her hunting at all. She was even more upset that he’d put her in danger of all the bears, mountain lions and coyotes out there these days. Actually, bears and mountain lions are scarce around here, though song dogs are pretty plentiful. I just suggested that he give a glance to his back-trail occasionally, especially since he had a child with him.

An hour-and-a-half later, they were at our door, because the granddaughter needed to use our throne. I asked her if she didn’t know what bears did in the woods and, while she apparently understood the reference, she informed me that she was a lady, not a bear. Knowing what a little rapscallion she is, I found her remark particularly amusing. After answering nature’s call, she told her dad that she would prefer to stay there with us, while he returned to the woods. And so she did.

Now, NOTHING shows you just how old you are like a hyper eight-year-old running loose in your normally quiet home. She “helped” her grandma around the house, dominated my computer watching funny animal videos and wore out the Mighty Dachshund with more play than she usually got in a week from us two old folks. That child is a definite handful, but we love her dearly and wouldn’t trade our time with her for anything.

A couple hours later, we assumed it was her dad ringing our doorbell, but I was pleasantly surprised to see my old “pizza buddy” from the factory standing on my porch. I’d given up dropping in on him at his home two counties away, because I feared that I was wearing out my welcome. Even when you only see someone a couple times a year, if they don’t reciprocate, you sort of wonder if you’re pushing things. I told him the last time that the next visit was up to him. It took him two years, but he finally made it! – lol – In all fairness, he only makes it down this way a couple times a year, so IF he stopped by, I knew it would take a while.

He’d brought his wife with him and we all sat and visited for an hour or two. We got caught up on work, retirement, health, family and loved ones passed on. Of course we hit the high spots of politics and a few other things, too. Incidentally, the reason we call each other pizza buddies is because every Friday night for a few years, we’d share a large pepperoni pizza from Dominoes and a two-liter Pepsi for our supper at work. In order to get the best price, and help out my coworkers, I took orders from anyone else who wanted to order there, too. I remember ordering as many as 25 pizzas, plus sandwiches. The manager of that store even won a vacation due to the sales volume there!

Of course, all us old folks had only talked for five minutes until our granddaughter fell asleep from boredom and slept soundly until her dad eventually returned. He had no deer but he did find a dead 9-pointer and asked if one of his friends could have the antlers for craft-work. Naturally, I agreed.

Our company all left about the same time, but I think we all had a good time. I told my buddy that I’d be up to see him eventually, but that I’d probably wait until warm weather (meaning spring). He allowed as to that being a reasonable idea. Our morning sure didn’t follow our original plan (going to town to run errands), but we wouldn’t have wanted to miss a minute of it. © 2015

Monday, December 28, 2015

And They Wonder Why We Don’t Trust Hospitals

Last February, I’d self-diagnosed cellulitis in my left leg. After several days, I noticed one evening that the swelling and some of the redness had spread from my shin, to clear above the knee. The idea that I might be on the verge of going septic scared me, but the walk-in clinics were closed, so I was forced to go to the emergency room of the local hospital—NEVER a good idea if it’s avoidable. I was almost broke and had no insurance.

I got there at 9pm and waited an hour for a doctor. She refused to treat me until I agreed to get a $300 ultra-sound of my leg to rule out Deep Vein Thrombosis, a highly unlikely situation, considering that I’d been taking 400 units of Vitamin E and 325 to 1950 grains of aspirin a day. I’m sure they were more interested in charging the money and “sue-proofing” their backsides than they were convinced the test was needed.

Some of the folks who provided that service were sick, and the lady who was filling in was working a double and had a waiting list. It wasn’t her fault; she was a nice lady doing the best that she could, but I had to wait over two hours for her services. That put me well after midnight. It was just after 1am when I was fully treated and released.

The bills eventually totaled nearly $2000, what I consider a grossly immoral amount. I was told that by managing to keep me there until after midnight, they could legally charge me for a room. I forget how many hundreds of dollars that was supposed to be.

I’m often slow to pay my bills, due to poverty, but I always get them paid eventually. Still, since I was only working a few hours a week through the spring, it was about three months before I could start paying ANYTHING. By that time, I was being threatened with collection agencies, but I just started sending them some money every month and nothing has happened yet.

However, they have the cost divided into two accounts, probably to deliberately confuse me into paying quicker. It hasn’t always worked. As a result, I’ve been getting a call once in a while by a lady, who says that she’s with them, who asks if she’s speaking to the right person. I tell her that she is. She asks if I’ve been receiving my bills, and I tell her that I have. Then, she says that she called to discuss my account and she needs the last four digits of my Social Security number to confirm that I’m who I said I was. I remind her that she called ME, not the other way around and that I never give information to strangers who call me on the phone. I ask her if she has any way to prove that she’s who she says she is and she has to admit that she doesn’t. She tries to be diplomatic and talk me into divulging the info anyway, but I thank her for calling, tell her that she’s wasting her time with that approach, bid her good-bye and hang up.

Recently, they’ve tried something new. They make a computerized call stating who they are and asking me to HOLD FOR THE NEXT AVAILABLE OPERATOR! Now you KNOW that ain’t gonna happen! I believe they really are who they say they are, but I can’t pay any faster anyway. Besides, considering their grossly immoral prices, I have a real hard time working up any sympathy for them, especially considering how stupid their main collections supervisor must be. © 2015

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Wage Slavery And Multiple Streams Of Income

I can thank Mike Oscar Hotel, over at for accidentally giving me the idea for this post. He’d made the comment on one of my posts (paraphrased here) that, while it was sort of too late for him, he was trying to teach his kids not to be wage slaves. I can certainly sympathize. Besides the virtual slavery “working for the man” entails, such employment can end at literally any moment. That can throw a gigantic monkey wrench into the lifestyle of the average American.

While I worked several part-time jobs on the side over the years, I spent the first 20 years of my adult life in self-employment. Had I remained single, I would have remained self-employed. However, when you’re married, you tend to try making your partner happy, even after you learn that happiness will be forever unattainable. As a result, I accumulated some debts which gradually grew beyond my ability to pay for on the income I had from self-employment. So, I went to work at the factory.

Unfortunately, it really is true that the more you make, the more you tend to spend. That’s why my debts actually grew, and I had no choice but to sell my ancestral home when I saw that the factory was eventually going to close (despite what THEY said). It goes back to living beyond your means (debt) and growing dependant on the job furnished you by the man. Let’s face it; the only person who actually makes it in this world is the man at the top. That’s why you need to be king of the hill, YOUR hill, even if it’s little more than a mole hill. You will never fire YOU, Even when times are bad! That doesn’t mean that your business can’t fail, but at least you won’t get the axe due to corporate belt-tightening.

Personally, I believe that if you want an income that is relatively safe, regardless of the economy, you first need to provide a product or service that is needed no matter what shape the economy is in. Being a self-employed plumber or electrician would fall under that description, but it may require a few years of apprenticeship to get there. Being someone who repairs lawn-mowers and chainsaws might be another example that would be easier to get into, IF you have the talent. A carpenter or general handyman may also fit the bill. One fellow that I used to know spent his life plowing gardens and brush-hogging properties for people.

It’s good, also, to have what writer and businessman Robert Kiyosaki calls “multiple streams of income” in his book Rich Dad, Poor Dad. I don’t care for the man’s politics, but the business idea is sound. In fact, my father (and later myself) had unwittingly followed it when we had the family business. Of course, we just called it “not putting all our eggs in one basket.”

It stands to reason that you should try to use whatever resources and talents are available and comfortable for you. We didn’t have any technical training, but we had the family farm, a sawmill, a few hundred acres of timber at our disposal and the skills accumulated from a life of living on the land.

The cattle were originally the main concern of the farm, since granddad had a dairy at one time. After he got a second-hand sawmill, the sawmill gradually became the best money-maker, so they concentrated on it and turned from dairying to beef cattle, which required less of a time investment. The lumber business was only good during the time of year when they could get the tractors and truck into the woods. Much of the winter was a bit bleak, then, for sawmill income. However, They stacked up their slabs, rather than burn them like many mills did back then. They also cut the tree limbs into firewood, rather than leaving them in the woods like most loggers. That way, they could saw up the slabs into firewood lengths in the winter time, mix them with the wood from the treetops and sell the wood to folks with woodstoves and fireplaces.

Edgings were saved, too, and ripped into tomato stakes and bean poles during the spring, when it was still too muddy to reach the woods dependably. Of course, there were calves, and sometimes yearlings to sell in the fall or winter, and we sold extra hay, when we had it. We also worked in quite a bit of mowing and baling for other people at an hourly or per bale rate. Several years before he passed away, Dad began selling Christmas trees that he grew on fields no longer needed by the cattle. Eventually, a few years of low prices caused him to drop the cattle all together.

I kept the business going when Dad died, too young, at age 59. Gradually, not following my own judgment caused the debt that eventually did me in and caused me to become a wage slave like most other people. It doesn’t have to be that way. If at all possible, you’d be wise to find a way to work for yourself. In a failing economy, it may be the only option.

Just for the record, I’ve read that when this country was founded, we were a nation of small businesses, since the industrial revolution hadn’t quite arrived on the scene yet, and serfdom wasn’t the law of the land on the new continent. Find a few things you can do to turn a buck and start building on them; you might be surprised what you accomplish. © 2015


Tuesday, December 22, 2015

An Idea For Redneck Carry Permit Holders


I noticed a couple guys at the doctor’s office today wearing bib-overalls. I used to wear them sometimes before I got married. I liked them; she didn’t. Now that I have a permit to carry, I tend to notice things that I never thought about before. One is the number of folks who carry (there sometimes ARE indications). The other is how some types of clothing are more conducive to carrying. Overalls are a case in point. If you get them a couple sizes too large, a guy could carry a couple real hawg-legs in them. Heck, if you ain’t worried about being legal, you could use a cane, walk with one knee stiff and carry a good-sized shotgun or even a military-style semi-automatic rifle. I’ll have to rethink my wardrobe! © 2015

Monday, December 21, 2015

Watching The Puker

He would probably prefer being referred to as a chef, author, TV personality or world traveler, but my wife and I just call him "the puker." It started when he got some bad food and drank too much booze on two or three shows and puked his guts up (to hear him tell it). Still, we find Anthony Bourdain of "Parts Unknown" interesting most of the time. It's one of those culinary shows where social studies, travel and history are often mixed together. I find that sort of thing far more interesting than the moronic cooking contests that most supposed culinary shows have become. While his politics and outlook are far different than mine, I respect that he sometimes goes dangerous places and asks dangerous questions. In some places he's been, people who spoke with him got arrested after he left. That's cutting it close.

Tonight's rerun was in Cuba. He managed to show glimpses of the totalitarian regime in power there, and the way it is gradually changing. He also managed to make some mention of the fabulous, intriguing, corrupt system that preceded it. Change is coming quickly to Cuba. It's predicted that in five years, it may be a different world. Money and development are on the way. The question is whether the culture and atmosphere that make the place special can be preserved, or if modernization will destroy the very thing people now flock there to see. I suspect destruction will be the outcome, much like happened to pre-war Hawaii. If you're one of those lucky folks who can travel, you might want to go as soon as it's legal, or it might not be worth going to see. Copyright 2015

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Another Local Landmark Gone

I think I was 15 the first time that I entered the neighbor’s barn. The neighbor had hired the kid across the road to brush-hog for him and the kid felt the job was overwhelming, so he asked me to help. Using Dad’s Ferguson 40 and my grandfather’s brush-hog, I managed to get several hours of the 80 hour job. We kept our water jugs and lunches in the old barn and met there for lunch and water breaks.

It was good money for a kid, and we were at the age where our inner consumer had been awakened. We also pitched a lot of hay bales into the mow of that barn for a couple years. The neighbor kid did all the mowing the next year or two, but he was soon off to a bigger and better life and I inherited the job. I still took many of my breaks at the barn, since anything left under the trees in the fields drew the attention of the cattle.

I’m saying this from memory, but I’d say the center, two-story, section of the barn was four 16 foot square bays long, meaning it was 16 by 64 feet. Near the mid-point, it had a couple stalls and a place where a set of steps once went upstairs. For some reason, they had been removed and were laying across the top of the opening, perhaps to discourage trespassers from going into the upstairs mow. The mow was about six feet at the sides and ten feet at the center.

On each of the long sides was a 16-foot-wide shed running the length of the barn, with a two-foot-wide manger running the length of the side against the main barn. It was open along the sides of the mow, so you could drop hay into the manger to feed the cattle. The cattle could come in either end of either shed to eat, get out of the rain and snow, or just loaf in the shade on a hot day. There wasn’t anything fancy about the barn, and it was painted entirely black, probably because it could be purchased cheaply, plus would blend with any creosote put on the bottom of the vertical siding boards.

Although it was a small farm of perhaps a hundred acres, when the owner’s grandfather lived there, it was only one part of a system of farms that once held the largest herd of Polled Herefords east of the Mississippi. You don’t think of such an operation being in West Virginia.

I mowed the farm for many years for the owner, until my working at the factory began to interfere. The work then went to a local farmer for a few years and then to a neighbor of mine who’s about ten years younger than I.

The barn sat on a slight rise above the valley floor, safe from any flooding. There at the side of the end of a ridge, and not far from the interstate highway that divided the valley back in the 60’s, it seemed like a fortress guarding entry up the “bayou,” as I called it. It was a welcome stop, not just when I was working there, but also on the hot days of my youth when I fished the bayou. It was also a stop where I hid from the incessant wind for a few minutes to warm up the winter I taught myself to trap muskrats under the ice. It was in the single digits some mornings that winter, and the ice was up to ten inches thick on the bayou. That’s a real rarity for this area, so, since I was young and crazy, I wanted to learn a new skill.

The old barn had been there since the late 30’s or early 40’s. I had over forty years to snap a picture of the old barn, but I never did. It’s ironic that we so seldom take photos of the things that loom large in our memories. The only photo I have is the one stolen from the local TV station as it burned, and it shows only flame, no barn. It was decided that it was caused by a trespasser’s cigarette butt, not deliberate arson. Due to stupidity, an old landmark is gone. It will be replaced by some smaller, ugly, metal-sided shed. The fellow doesn’t graze cattle there anymore, so it will hold only a few pieces of equipment. I’ll miss seeing the old place, but I’ll always remember it. © 2015

A moment's stupidity and a landmark is gone. (Click image to enlarge.)

Monday, December 14, 2015

This Morning

I only slept 'til six this morning. Considering that I didn't get to sleep until after midnight and took the dog out at three, that's not enough for this old geezer. I took the pooch out again at six and then got on the computer, since the missus turned the TV up to watch the morning news. At 8:30, I took the pooch out again and we sat on the porch for a half-hour or so. You could tell a rain was coming from the clouds and the way the far-away trains sounded so near.

Later, I picked up a couple tarps the wind got ahold of the other day. After refolding them, I stashed them where they should be safe from the coming predicted gusts. I went down to my compost pile and added the last of the jugs of "night water" stored there. The pile of leaves that started out four feet tall, now measures only about ONE foot. By planting time next spring, it should be usable, especially if I give it a stirring this winter. Now that I'm sleeping downstairs, only about 16 feet from the throne, there will be no more such jugs.

I was on the porch again with the pooch when the meter man came to read the electric meter on the corner of the house. The Mighty Dachshund made sure that he didn't sneak in the drive-way, step out of his truck or step up on the porch unnoticed. I told him not to worry, that I had a firm hold on "Killer," (with her big mouth and wagging tail). He laughed and wished me a merry Christmas.

I took one of the two big firewood cuts from under the big white oak in the front yard and put it down near the compost pile. That way, I can have a seat when I'm tinkering down there, or play out before I make a full round of the lawn. I've decided to have several in strategic spots, so I have a ready rest if I get tired or winded when I'm outside. I figure it will require one in each corner of the yard and four on the trail between the house and the bench of the hill down behind the house. I don't go there often anymore, but it's a long haul back up when I do.

As is my custom, I sat on the edge of the front porch to trim my toe-nails. I'll miss that spot, if we ever get the front porch screened, like we hope. After that, I sat in the swing again for a while. The wind was picking up as my wife opened the door beside me and chatted from the doorway. Slowly, the rain began, the drops kept getting bigger and the wind gained speed. Finally, I was getting soaked, despite sitting about six feet alee of the west end of the porch. In fact, my wife was also getting wet, standing in the doorway, five feet further down the side of the house, even though the porch is six feet wide.

That ended my time outdoors, so I got on the computer a while and my wife watched a soap opera. It had quit raining by the time we came back from town this afternoon, but it was cooler and still breezy, so I just let the dog do her things and we both headed indoors. © 2015

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Saturday Morning

My first brush with the new day was at 3AM, when I took the Mighty Dachshund outside. It was a warm night for December so, after she drained, we sat on the porch and enjoyed the night a while. It says something about the temperature that I was sitting comfortably in the porch swing wearing only my skivvies, a t-shirt and my L.L. Beam camp mocs. I guess it says something for the convenience of darkness, too, that I could get by with such an outfit. One thing about my simple way of dressing, all I have to do is add a pair of blue-jeans and I'm road-ready!

The 4:30 rooster was already stirring for some reason. Perhaps he senses that his owners are gone and feels lonely or frightened. They've been good neighbors over the years, minding their own business rather than ours, but I heard through the grape-vine that we're going to lose them. They're going to retire to the mountains, I guess. Maybe that's their way of preparing for the crash or, maybe, they just like to trout fish. We've seen no signs of life for the last few days, so I suspect they're in the mountains making arrangements. I don't know who's taking care of the chickens, but their son lives out the road, so I suppose he's doing it.

Sitting there in the swing, I could hear the tires of the trucks on the four-lane a couple miles away. I don't know how far that sound travels but, when I was younger, I believe that I was seven road-miles from the highway, up on a mountain, and could still hear them. Of course, being in West Virginia, they might have only been a couple miles away as the crow flies.

Speaking of crows, while sitting there, I heard what sounded like the fighting “purr” of a crow in the distance, though it could also have been a turkey gobbling at a much greater distance. I don't know why either one would be stirring at that hour of the night. Still, the pooch and I spooked a flock from the trees in our yard just after dark the other night, so who's to say. I was a bit startled for a second when that happened, but the little dog just looked up in curiosity with no apparent concern. Maybe she figured the “big dog” (me) would protect her if any trouble came of it.

When I took her out again at 6:30, I realized that I hadn't heard the six o'clock rooster for several days. A couple weeks ago, there were some red lights at one the homes out the road, and we haven't seen that neighbor since. In fact, it looks like someone is cleaning out his trailer and sorting his stuff. They must have already dealt with the rooster. Since we don't socialize with anyone, we never know what's going on. One of our other neighbors was dead a year before we ever heard. Since I quit getting the paper, I don't even see the obits. I guess I could check them online, but I never think to do so.

We sat on the porch a while at 6:30, also, and the Mighty Dachshund was just as happy as before. The big light on the pole out by the highway casts a fair amount of light in our yard, now that most of the leaves are off the big oak out that way. She kept an eye on things, but her nose was even more active. Even during the earlier stint of porch-sitting, there was enough light to watch her nose twitch from side to side and see her sides move as she took quick “mini-breaths” to aid her sniffing. She'd love to be an outside dog if we'd let her. Of course, she’d expect us to live out there, as well.

It was 10:30m before I took her out again. She fertilized the side yard, as well as drained that time. Even though she’s back to living mostly on people food, she's off cheese-burgers and chicken jerky and seems to be doing alright. She'd live on chicken jerky if we'd let her, but it gave her the trots, plus, the vet said it was loaded with fat. The trots are gone now and she deposits nice healthy-looking “cigars” in the grass now, instead of what looked like a calf would leave if it had scours.

I weighed in at 395 when I came back in the house. I'd gotten down to that point at the first of the week, and then, immediately bounced back up. It's taken all week to get that weight back. I doubt if I ever get down to where I should, but if I can lose an average of even just a pound a week, it'll be a good thing.

Take it from me; don't ever let yourself get fat. © 2015

Monday, December 7, 2015

Is Obama Our Last President?

I think Obama has been trying to stir open revolt for years. I believe he (or more properly, his handlers) are frustrated by the apparent cowardice (or patience) of the American citizens. Muslims are being brought to this country so they will begin jihad here. Enough of that will give Obama reason (in his mind) to declare martial law “for our nation’s security.” On the other hand, if he holds off, vigilantes will inevitably begin shooting muslims on sight. Then, he can declare martial law to protect those poor, innocent, peace-loving muslims.

If a republican is elected president next fall (especially Trump), that may be the catalyst in forcing his hand. Will this country ever swear in another president? If Obama declares martial law, I seriously doubt it. Nothing would make me happier than to be proven completely wrong, but I guess only time will tell. © 2015

Sunday, December 6, 2015

An Odd And Unexpected Birthday Gift (w/pic)

No, it’s not MY birthday; but my first cousin-once-removed turned 52 today. I’ve always liked him since he was little. He’s just one of those fellows that always has a mischievous grin on his face that makes you grin back and keep an eye over your shoulder at the same time. I was thinking that he was only 50, but Facebook told me otherwise.

Now Jack has had several women over the years, but no wife. Of course, his parents, though married for several years, didn’t set much of an example. It’s his dad that’s my first cousin, but it’s his mom that has the sense of humor; she can keep you in stitches. His dad, generally, has the personality of a brick. Thankfully, he took more after his mom. Jack is still single, though, and somewhat heartbroken. I think he’s resigned himself to bachelorhood though, perhaps, for some reasons of his own making. Still, I enjoy his company.
Recently, he bought three acres in the country with seven apple trees and a run-down house on it. He lives in a little house in town, which he bought several years ago, that once belonged to his maternal grandparents, but I think he plans on moving to the country eventually. From the work ahead of him, I’d guess the move is still a couple years away. He’s doing all the work himself, and seems to doing well at it. He seems to have most of the tools that he needs, too.

Still, I came across something in the basement recently that very few folks have anymore—a super heavy-duty crowbar. It has no crook on the end, but it has a small blade-like tip on one end, and a moderately slim point on the other end. It’s about an inch-and-a-quarter at the middle of its five foot length, and about an inch-and-an-eighth nearer to the tips. If you look closely, you can tell that it was forged from an old solid drive-shaft, probably off some vehicle from the 20’s or 30’s, knowing Granddad’s history.

Now, finding that bar put my total at three, which is at least one more than I need. I’m sure that it saw a lot of use when Granddad still worked as a rig-building contractor in the oilfields. I know that Dad and I used to use it a lot around the farm and sawmill when I was young. If you do a lot of heavy outdoor work, a heavy bar can be a good thing to have. Being hard up, I’d tried to sell it at one point, but very few folks want to buy things that have to do with hard work.

Since Jack has all that work to do on his “new” house,” I asked him if he’d have use for it, and he answered to the affirmative. Since it was still on hand when Jack’s birthday came around, it seemed a good time to get it out of my way. Today, on our way back from town, my wife and I took the side road to his new place and found him there, working on the roof of the large back deck. He seemed to enjoy getting the crowbar. After a couple handshakes and a cursory glance at the place, I let him get back to work.

To tell you the truth, I’m glad the old tool will stay in the family a few more years. © 2015

the old crowbar - click image to enlarge 

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Rain And Other Things

It rained here fore most of 72 hours, but it finally stopped yesterday. Sometimes, it was a mist so fine that you could barely feel it on your skin. Other times, the rain was heavy. Mostly, it was just a nice gentle, steady rain.

I don't curse the rain as some folks do. That comes from being raised on a farm, and understanding the consequences of dry weather. In fact, I rather enjoy a SHORT stint of rainy weather. I'm reminded of sitting on the porch of our farmhouse, or the hay in our barn, or the skids in our old sawmill shed and listening to the patter of rain on shingles or tin. I especially enjoyed the sound of the rain on the leaves of the surrounding trees. The fact that rain put a temporary hold on some of the more onerous tasks around the farm may also have sweetened my pleasure at the falling droplets.

My wife is generally the opposite. Like the blossom of a four o'clock, she closes up and withdraws when the sun isn't shining. Needless to say, she's been a bit down these last three days, while I've while I've been as happy as a duck. Don't ask either one of us what we think of being snowed in after the second day, though! Incidentally, there were a few snowflakes last nigh, for the second time this fall.

I recently sold my collection of 14 Ames belt buckles that came as safety prizes from the shovel factory where I used to work. I had no sentimental attachment to the company. They were, after all, the folks who closed us down and move the bulk of the work to China. The remainder, they sent to Pennsylvania, where the work is done by Mexicans. I see the buckles priced at $15-20 on eBay, though I don't know what they actually bring. I only got $4 for mine, and only then because they came with a nice walnut display case. Oh well, It's one less piece of clutter in the house and a few more groceries in the kitchen.

I can't remember if I've already mentioned that my cruise doesn't work on my truck, but it doesn't, And that after spending over $500 that I thought would also restore the cruise. It's supposedly going to require an additional $400 that I don't have to fix the it. I guess I'll continue doing without cruise for a while. I just wonder what all will go when the spiral cable goes (the supposed culprit).

I drug a couple boxes of gun parts out of the basement to inventory and photograph today. I have enough parts to build a cherry full-stock flintlock, and a maple half-stock percussion. The guru has already spoken for the flintlock. I hope I can sell the other one, too. I need to start saving a few hundred dollars for April 15, as Obama is going to tax me for being too poor to get insurance on my wife. So far, the tax is still cheaper than any insurance I  can find.

I found that I had a few muzzle-loading accoutrements that I'd forgotten about, plus I came across some others that I had misplaced. I'm glad I found them, as I plan on keeping the old Thompson Center Renegade that I had bored out to a .54 smoothbore. I think a small caliber smoothbore is the best single gun to have after a .22 rifle. Flintlock would be best, but mine's percussion. Then again, I'll probably never part with my old 12 gauge ribbed, Iver Johnson, either. It must be what poetry would feel like if such a thing was made from steel and walnut.

I hope that I have time to rummage around the basement a little more tomorrow. There are a couple things that I want to throw in with the flintlock when I find them. The guru's done me a lot of favors over the years, so I want to be generous with him. © 2015

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Camo Crazy

When I started hunting solo 48 years ago at age 12, most guys didn’t wear camo. Those with the money wore Carhartt’s®. Most of the rest of us wore whatever we had. Woodsy-colored flannel shirts and jackets were common. So were regular military fatigue jackets, military field jackets and green and brown plaid CPO jackets. Those who could get them wore brown duck pants or fatigue pants. A few lucky souls found military surplus camo at affordable prices. Blue jeans and work boots were what usually covered the lower end of the body, though. Different hats, caps and toboggans were common, usually in earth tones. Bird hunters often wore them in reds or orange though, usually red, since orange was just beginning to catch on as a safety color. I wore everything except camo and Carhartt’s at one time or another, in other words, whatever I could afford. I probably didn’t have any hunter orange until the relevant laws were passed, or camo until I was in my 20’s. I never had an all camo outfit, though, until I was in my 40’s.

Eventually, camo became a political statement. Its use as such developed as an in-your-face way to show support of hunting, when the anti-hunting sentiment started getting so militant. Whether that’s wise or not, I don’t know, but it isn’t going to end now. For one thing, lower-income hunters figure if they can only afford a few articles of clothing, they’ll get camo for hunting and then wear it everywhere else as well. That’s the opposite thinking from the old days when people bought regular clothes and wore them for hunting, too. Somewhere along the way, that turned camo into a fashion statement. “Urban camo” showed up in shades of orange, purple, blue, grey, yellow and, heavens-to Betsy, even pink. I can’t really say if it helps a person blend into the crowd. I suspect not.

It seems to me like the fashion angle is getting a little out of hand. Years ago, I laughed at camo cigarette lighters, flashlights, emergency whistles and so on. If you dropped ANY of those items in the woods, would you really WANT them to be more difficult to see? This year, I see camo recliners, camo lamps, camo vacuum sweepers and other silly things for sale at the Chinese Emporium. Just recently, camo has even made it into kitchen-ware. The pots and pans are one thing, but if you ever actually took large kitchen knives with camo handles and BLADES into the outdoors, it could get downright dangerous if you drop them. That would especially be the case if it was in low light and you couldn’t find your camo flashlight.

Who knows? In a few years, those new mirror blinds may catch on so much that hunters will be walking through the woods wrapped in aluminum foil (with the shiny side out, of course). At least they’ll be safe from aliens, as long as they have their hat on. © 2015

Friday, November 27, 2015

This, That And T’uther

We ate Thanksgiving dinner with “the kids” yesterday. That means my stepson and his wife. There were three of our five grandchildren there, so that made it even better. It seems to me that the youngest (age 8) is even more “huggy” and clingy than she was before my hospital visit. She doesn’t get a lot of physical affection from either parent, but I believe her dad does better than her mom on that, as her mother, a former druggie, is extremely self-absorbed. So her grandparents, and one “shack-up” grandfather have always supplied the bulk of that. Sadly, she lost the other grandmother and the shack-up in the last couple years. I think she’s afraid that she might lose one of us next and is understandably insecure about it. I lament her insecurity, but it does have the one positive effect of making me feel more like a grandpa than ever before. I missed all that with the others, considering that I sort of inherited them all.

Today, my stepson brought HIS stepson out to go deer hunting. Like all of us, my stepson is a long way from perfect, but he does extremely well at treating his step-children as his own. I’m proud of him. Being only 15, I figured that he doesn’t have a lot of money to spare, so I gave him a box of 550 .22 shells that I found in the basement the other day. I’m sure that my stepson keeps him supplied with all he needs, but the boy seemed to appreciate them, anyway.

I learned Wednesday that the neighbor who bought a lot from me and built a house 20 years ago, is planning to sell out and move to the mountains. I don’t know his reasons, but they could be several. He’s been a good guy and a good neighbor. I hope that the next one is as good.

I also learned that I won’t be able to sell a back corner of land to one of the young men who hunts it. It turns out that the neighbor from whom he’d have to buy a right-of-way doesn’t have a good enough one himself to allow for any increase of traffic. I’d hoped to have that option to raise funds to live on until retirement, if I don’t get disability.

We have a severe shortage of places to store things in our house, so I’ve been looking at various options. I found a place that is dry, except at times with extremely heavy winds with heavy rain, then it leaks slightly. Eventually, I’ll get the money saved to have a professional figure it out but, until then, I’ve learned that 550 .22 shells fits in the plastic jars that I buy fruit in t the store. Since that makes them water-proof, I’ll be storing some there until the leak is fixed. They may even stay there afterwards. It would be nice if I could use the same size jars to store shotgun shells, but they only hold 20, and the few old boxes of shells that I have left are 25’s.

I’m getting to where I don’t have many guns or boxes of ammo left. I’ve sold most of my guns and given away most of the ammo. I’ll never use most of it, so why hoard it; let some folks have some fun (or save it for the uprising to come).

Well, my wife is complaining about forgetting what I look like, so I guess I’d better quit typing and go spend some quality time with her and the pooch. © 2015

Thursday, November 26, 2015

46 Years And Whadda Ya Get?

Forty-six years ago (to this very month, I think) I bought a horse and saddle with the money that I made from growing and selling potatoes. I was 14. Not long afterward, I had him checked over by a veterinarian named “Nick,” whom my father had done business with for several years. Nick’s office was in town, on the street where our country road entered the city limits. We rarely went to his office, though, except with a dog or cat. Usually, Nick came to our place, since our need usually involved one of our cows and, later, my horse.

Soon, I got a dog, so Nick got a little business from me on that account, too. Eventually, I traded horses, plus, two more farm dogs succeeded the first. Along the way, Nick got another, younger vet to help him, until that fellow was killed in a car wreck. A few years later, we parted with the cattle and my horse. At retirement age, Nick sold the business to a younger vet, but the business retained the same name and location. Eventually, even that vet retired. During those years, we had a long-lived house dog, and now have another. Recently, the new owners moved the business from the north end of town to the east end. They’re closer to the country, close to the intersection of a couple four-lanes, plus have a facility three times the size of their old one.

Tuesday, the Mighty Dachshund had watery, bloody stools, and was off her feed, so I took her to the vet. To learn that she had either colitis (most likely) or pancreatitis cost me $92, including medication. The little pooch is like a child to us, so no complaints. The problem was, here at Thanksgiving, the unexpected expenditure tapped me out. The young vet that I got was one I’d never had before (though he turned out to be one of the two owners). He told me that if there was no improvement in 24 hours, to contact him. Considering the pooches’ habits and stubbornness, it was hard to be sure if she was improved during that time, so the vet said to bring her in for a blood test for pancreatitis, as that disease could be quickly fatal, and it was best to either rule it out or deal with it quickly.

The problem was that I was broke, and the vet refused to treat her without payment, even though I will have funds again next week. So, he gave the best advice that he could and left me with a potentially needlessly dying dog, all for a lack of a measly $40. Luckily, my wife found a twenty that she didn’t know she had, and with some other bills we had, we scraped together the $40. So, we went on to the vets. After waiting three-and-a-half hours, she finally got the test and I got the (thankfully) negative results. Had the results been positive for pancreatitis, I’m sure I would have been back to square one, the owner of a dying dog for lack of funds. (Ironically, despite being cash poor, my net worth is probably greater than that of the young vet.)
Out of fairness, I’ll say that It’s not just veterinarians that behave in such ways; many medical doctors, also, demand the cash up-front, or are willing to let the patient die. I ran into some during my wife’s cancer surgery a few years ago.

Now, I realize that, unlike the other partner, this vet didn’t know me from Adam. Plus, I’m sure there were no records to indicate that I’d done business with the company for 46 years. Very few companies, to their great discredit, keep such records. Also, having been in business myself at one time, I understand why they don’t want to start a charity. However, it seems to me that 46 years of loyalty should be worth something.

Two things came to mind following the experience. Firstly, it says something about a person’s morals that they will let an animal die, just because the owner is temporarily broke. Secondly, I would have to be a blooming idiot to feel the slightest loyalty to that business any longer. © 2015

Monday, November 23, 2015

Recent Observations And Ruminations – Part Two

I heard a barred owl over toward the cave side of the hill a couple nights ago. I don’t know if they’re courting yet or not. I haven’t heard any coyotes for a while. The nights are quieter now that the cold is settling in (except for the sound of the wind in the trees).
It’s a sunny afternoon as I type this. My wife is watching what must be the last soap opera on TV. She says they keep killing people off to where she wonders if it, too, will soon be history. It’s gotten rather trashy over the years anyway; sometimes she gets disgusted and turns it off (especially if it shows people rolling around in bed (and especially if it’s two guys)).

Later – My wife and I went to town this afternoon and let my chiropractor copy my Medicaid card. Then, we went downtown to the Oil Field Museum, where I gave them a three-photo-wide picture of the oil field in Blue Creek, West Virginia, in the early 1900’s. The derricks come right into the wide spot along the creek that makes up the town. Railroad cars are in the photo, along with at least one man on horseback. I would like to have a copy of it, but there’s no easy way to copy or scan something that size (24” or so long).

Years ago, I thought it was amusing when my then teenage stepson took up fishing, after my wife repeatedly refused to ever let me take him fishing. This year, at age 45, he’s taken up squirrel hunting and deer hunting. She’s appalled that he’s taken up the “blood sports” like her heathen husband once did (me). She told him it was a shame that he didn’t have his deceased father around as he grew up. That’s true, of course, but what she was insinuating was that he wouldn’t be hunting these days if his father hadn’t died before getting him raised. She considers it meaningless that her first husband went hunting with his buddies on the Marine Corp base, when they lived in Virginia. Once again, I’m amused.

I pulled my two of buckets of ammo from the basement this week to sort. I’ll never use it all, since I don’t get around like I used to, so I might as we share some of it with my friends and relatives. In fact, I’ve already gotten rid of some of it. I used to have several pounds of black powder and 3000 shot wads, but a young plumber who was doing some work for me a few years ago relieved me of them without my realizing it. I stocked up when Clinton got elected the first time. If I was younger, I’d be buying everything I could afford; now that this country elects muslim commies like Obama. I’m too old to be a “freedom-fighter’ these days though, and too crippled up to be much of a hunter. Still, I haven’t sold all my guns or given ALL of my ammo away. I might need them to go down fighting when the guys with blue helmets show up at my door. © 2015


Recent Observations And Ruminations – Part One

It’s cold here, now. It had been running a little warm for this time of year, but it got down to 36 the night before last and 19 last night. That wouldn’t have been so bad, but there’s a near-constant breeze that cuts right through me. I couldn’t handle wind even as a kid. It gave me earaches, which often led to colds and sinus infections. Now that I’m older and my circulation isn’t what it used to be, I find that even cold by itself is a bit harder to handle. I think that I notice it more, too, since I’ve been limiting my water and food a little, due to my CHF and A-Fib. There are chores and hobbies outside that I want to do, but those will have to wait for warmer days.

Even though I haven’t quite made it down to 400 yet (from 429), the swelling in my feet and legs is mostly gone. I can comfortably wear socks again, just in time for this winter. I seem to have reached a plateau at 402-404 that I haven’t been able to break. This morning, I hit 401, though, so maybe there’s hope yet.

I’ve recently begun using the electric carts at Wally World and Kroger’s. I’d gotten to where I’d just give my wife the money and wait in the truck. Sometimes I’d read and, sometimes, I’d use my laptop. A lot of places are cheapening or tightening controls on their Wi-Fi, though, so I was more and more limited to just writing articles to post, as opposed to going online to check Facebook, my blog, or email. The last few weeks, I’ve just been trying to find a cart and meander around the store while the missus did the actual shopping. It’s been enjoyable to wander the aisles again, after so long away from it. The luster is starting to wear off a bit, though. I find myself now watching for folks that need a cart worse than I do, or sometimes just napping in the truck, after I tire a bit.

I know that some folks using the carts can be really rude and feel entitled to the right-of-way at all times. However, I’ve also noticed even more, how rude and inconsiderate people in general are these days. Women and kids seem to be the worst at requiring the whole aisle, though. They’ll have their buggy on one side of the aisle while they stand on the other side and look at something forever and a day. Usually, I’ll just pull close enough that it becomes obvious that I’m wanting through, and they EVENTUALLY move. Occasionally, I’ll say “excuse me,” hoping they’ll be polite in return. Sometimes, they are. Other times, they’ll snap at me that they’ll just be a minute and continue to block the aisle. I used to just turn and leave, often coming in the aisle from the other end. Quite often, those same people would then change positions, trying to keep me from even entering the aisle. I used to either just wait them out or shake my head and leave. Anymore, I get rather nasty and when they refuse to move the first time, I just tell them that you can always tell the people who were raised by wolves. Then I leave. Just for the record, I’ll say it to the big hairy guys, too, not just the women and kids. I guess that’s not very Christian, but, sometimes, I wonder where turning the other cheek ends and casting your pearls before swine begins. © 2015

Friday, November 20, 2015

Muslim Database Backlash Bull Pucky

We’ve all heard of Trump’s “muslim database” by this time. Of course, the media is going ape, and is trying to convince us that every red-blooded American is doing the same. Naturally, only flaming liberals are believed by them to have red blood. Most conservatives are probably like myself, slightly uncomfortable with the idea, but realistic enough to believe that it might be for the best.

The liberals remind us that we’re supposed to have religious freedom in this country, and they’re correct. Still, the holy books of Sikhs, Hindus, Buddhists, Christians nor Jews require them to murder the citizens and overthrow the governments of nations not in line with their theology. That makes them the opposite of islam. It also doesn’t acknowledge that islam is a form of government FIRST, like republicanism, democracy, socialism, fascism, monarchy, etc. and a religion SECOND. Even then, it may hide in its religious disguise primarily to achieve its political goals. Besides, our government already has a Christian database, a conservative database and a constitutionalist database believed by Kool-Aid drinkers and unicorns to be made up of dangerous, un-American enemies of the republic (thanks to Obama).

I heard one “news-person” and a couple celebrities (Who could be more qualified to comment than a celebrity?) say that registering muslims would be exactly like the Nazis registering Jews. On the surface, that sounds true, but let’s think about it. Back in Hitler’s day, Jews were not killing innocent men, women and children. They were not beheading anyone, executing others for simply not being Jewish, or blowing up any buildings or busses. The Jews were, in fact, behaving in a very civilized manner, completely unlike the muslims that we see daily on the news.

I know it seems unfair to non-violent muslims to be lumped in with the murderers, but let’s face it, the only reason those muslims are non-violent is either because they’re sniveling cowards, OR because they are NOT doing what their holy book DEMANDS that they do!

All-in-all, I’m beginning to think that a muslim database might not be so bad. © 2015

Thursday, November 19, 2015

A Visit To The Tire Shop

Despite being a month earlier than usual, I had my studded tires put on today. In part, it was because we had snow on this day last year. It was also because I know that I would have trouble putting chains on the truck with my ticker troubles. Considering that I’m going to the Toyota dealership tomorrow to get the 4WD fixed, I figured it was time to put the studs on anyway.

Incidentally, there’s a short story behind the 4WD going out. The guys at the dealership had to remove the skid-plate every time they changed the oil filter. Not surprisingly, they soon had two of four bolt-holes stripped out. Since I don’t go mudding, I told them to just heave the skid-plate. As fate would have it, I apparently had an unseen piece of steel on the highway flip up and put a dent in the front cross-member and crack the cover on the front of the block. Exactly WHEN that happened, I don’t know, but the electronics that kick in the front hubs were under that cover, so the drive to the front tires quit working. Had the skid-plate been in place, it wouldn’t have happened.

When I got to the tire shop, they couldn’t find a couple of my tires at first. After I’d sat around a half-hour, they found them in an out-of-sequence storage slot. Not too much later, the service guy came to the waiting area and asked me to go with him. In the mounting/dismounting area they showed me a skinny, shiny (but probably antique) box-style cut nail they’d missed seeing when they dismounted the tires last fall. Of course, it couldn’t be down in the tread area, where the tire could be patched. No, it had to be within nearly an inch of the bead. They said law prevented them from remounting it. I assume they’re telling me the truth, so I ordered a new one. It’s supposed to be in tomorrow but, until then, I’m riding on three studded tires.

Once again, I made use of some of my time waiting by going around and picking up wheel weights that were stuck in the seams of the concrete and didn’t hose loose when the lot was cleaned. I probably got enough for a couple dozen .50 caliber round balls. I also go ahead and pick up the weights that I suspect are actually zinc. I’m not sure why; they melt at a temperature 200-300 higher than lead. I can skim them off the top with the dross, I guess.

I expect to be at the dealer’s until about noon tomorrow. If the new tire makes it in, I really should go have it put on. I guess I’ll see what happens. © 2015

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Paris Is Coming, But That’s Not The Worst Of It!

What happened in Paris is only the beginning. Actually, I told my wife on 9/11 that she was seeing the beginning of the end, and even THAT wasn’t true. The beginning was long ago, but that’s irrelevant now. I believe we’ll soon see such things happening in other countries, including our own. No matter whether Obama pretends to be against such behavior and turns the government loose to fight terrorists, or whether he doesn’t, I believe things will get bad here. Of course, more and more freedoms will be taken from us in the name of “fighting terrorism.” Let’s be honest, though, Bush started THAT ball rolling.

There is another scenario that’s even worse. I’ve already heard the comment that the terrorists just got Trump elected. That doesn’t bother me. He’s no worse than the rest of the candidates, and probably better. HOWEVER, that scares the bejeebers out of all liberals (and muslims like Obama). They will understand the actual NEED for a Paris-like attack in this country to save them from that fate.

Let’s think about it. Muslims have been streaming into this country for years now. Suddenly, our beloved muslim-in-chief has begun bringing them into this country by the thousands. Remember, also, that Obama has spent his whole presidency trying to get rid of the old guard in the military, get Christianity thrown out of same and “islamitize” the remaining troops. Many of the key positions in government are now filled by muslims, including many in security. All Obama needs is a couple of Paris-like situations, and he’ll happily declare martial law. Does it now make even more sense why there’s been an ammunition shortage, to some degree, ever since he’s been in office, while the government has been buying millions of “unneeded” rounds?

Things aren’t looking good, folks. I sort of hope the Lord comes back before all these things happen, but I suspect He’ll let us reap what we’ve sown. After all, the masses have wanted it SO badly, and for SO long. © 2015

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Kilroy In The Boudoir

Most of you older folks (like me) know about Kilroy. He used to leave notes in some of the darnedest places. He had a lot of help, of course, including me a few times.

The last time that I assisted him was several years ago when Janice, a single lady that we went to church with, asked if we could move a bed to another room of the house for her. She wasn’t all that much older than my wife and me, but she had some spinal problems and sometimes depended on some of her fellow church members to help her out. She was just fun-loving enough to be good company, but just straight-laced enough to be the object of a certain amount of teasing.

As it turned out, the two girls that she’d adopted kept her busy while we were there, and Janice barely had the time to show us what she wanted done and then inspect our work afterwards. That left my wife and me alone with the main piece of furniture in the room while we fitted the rails, put in the slats and added the box springs and mattress. Noting that there was a large black pen on the dresser, I wrote “KILROY WAS HERE!” on the middle slat and turned that side downward. We quit attending that church not long afterward, so we sort of drifted away from the folks there.

A few years later, some folks from the church pitched in and cleaned her house and moved the bed again, when she had been ill for a while. Someone found the message on the board and the news spread like wildfire among the folks there that day. Janice got asked a lot of questions in double entendre and blushed quite a bit, as she tried to think up smart-alec answers for them. From what I hear, she never did figure out just how that message got here (or when). We never told them either! © 2015

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

I’m Not “Buying” It!

I thought about buying some .22 shells a while back, but couldn’t find any. No biggie. I probably have enough for any hunting that I’ll do in my few remaining years, especially considering that I don’t have the wind to walk much anymore. I was thinking primarily of having them for trade goods, if times get truly desperate. Of course, we’re being told that the shortage is merely caused by panicked gun owners hoarding ammunition. I don’t buy it. In normal times, at least ONE of the ammo makers would be building a whole new factory just to meet the demand. Not so these days.

The experience DID reinforce my belief that there is a continuing war on ammunition, as a sneaky way of achieving gun control. There IS, after all, a war on lead, the idea being to make it harder to either manufacture or reload ammunition. We now live in an era of brass sinkers, zinc wheel weights, lead-free gasoline and steel shot. I’m not saying that those things are completely bad, but don’t think there isn’t an ulterior motive. The last lead smelter in the U.S. closed its doors recently, after the EPA raised the regulations on the process tenfold. Lead now has to come from foreign sources for ammo manufacture. Incidentally, I’ve read that leaded fuel for small planes will become prohibitive, also—another “dangerous” freedom done away with.

In all fairness, this started back during LBJ’s presidency, and has continued unabated ever since. THIS president, however, is managing to hasten the loss of our freedoms like no other. Sadly, most of the same idiots who voted for him earlier would happily vote for him again if they could. I guess the citizens, on average, will eventually get everything they deserve. © 2015

Sunday, November 8, 2015

A Month Of Porch-Sitting

Those of you who follow my humble ramblings here know of my fondness for the ancient and honorable art of porch-sitting. One of the few good things to come of my recent Congestive Heart Failure, and my even more recent round with A-Fib is the chance to engage in one of my favorite pastimes.

The leaves were just beginning to turn when my vigil began in earnest, the very day of my return from the hospital on October 5th. I could see, perhaps, 30 yards into the woods from my seat in the porch swing. It’s been quieter than normal in my yard this October. With no acorn crop, the raucous sound of arguing squirrels and quarreling blue-jays was rarely heard. The local crows found things in the distance to discuss, but precious few in the limbs of the white oaks around our home at the edge of the woods. Still, I could hear the flying arguments of both species in the distance, so they were in the neighborhood. Even the titmice, chickadees and nuthatches seemed less plentiful than normal, though I don’t know why that should be.

I haven’t been parking myself for all that long at a time in the swing beside the entry to our home. Only a handful of times have I lasted for as long as half-an-hour or more. It seems something, or someone, always calls me away after a few minutes. The lack of long sit-downs has been made up by their frequency, though. Nearly every time I take out the Mighty Dachshund, we have a porch-sit both before and after her sashay on the lawn. That happens a half-dozen times some days, if you include the trips in the night. My little companion seems to enjoy the vigils on the porch nearly as much as I, since she’s just as willing to stay with me there at night as through the day.

It’s been a little warmer than average this October. In fact, here is the 8th of November, and I have yet to need a jacket. I think that may change this coming week. I’ve listened to a lot of wind rustling through the trees during that time. I love the sound. Sometimes, there was rain hitting the leaves, and that added an extra dimension. As the season progressed, even the leaves sounded a lot like rain, as they released their grip and sailed through the treetops to the leaf-littered ground below.

Most of the early color has been maples, so the color before me has stayed a golden hue the whole time. The color has gotten sparser, though, and I can now see 150 yards to the far side of the small hollow beyond the porch. Still, the view is mostly yellow.

This morning, I watched a doe and her “grown” twins in the neighbor’s yard across the road. They were milling around, as if there was something nearby that made them edgy. Finally, I remembered that the rut has begun and thought that a buck might be making a nuisance of himself. Bucks have one-track minds, like teen-aged boys, but the does aren’t interested until they’re interested. Sure enough, five minutes later, a six or eight point buck strode into the area just vacated by the doe and her brood.

The prettiest month is behind me now, but the story continues. I got out my jacket today, so I should still be able to watch the show. Maybe I should pop some corn! © 2015