City Girl meets Country Mayhem: Part 1 – “Like a Man.”
November 17, 2010 § Leave a comment
This past weekend, I went hunting for the first time with my boyfriend (Travis) and his family. They have a farm out west, and a nice parcel of land a few miles away. Some neighbours were also kind enough to let us hunt on their land.
Hunting is definitely not for the faint of heart…and surprisingly, as a born and bred city girl, I wasn’t too bothered by it. It was hard work…much harder than I had anticipated, and sometimes, I felt like saying, “Y’know guys…I think I’m just going to sit this one out for today.”
I said it once, and missed out.
The first day we went out, I was ill prepared. I had nothing on except an orange toque, a pair of jeans, my steel toe boots, a sweatshirt, and an orange vest. Trav looked at me and said, “I think you’re going to need a little more than that.” I replied (dumbly), “No no, honey…I’ll be fine.”
Of course, the very first thing I was asked to do was what seasoned hunters would call “push bush”. Yes yes, I giggled too…but in all seriousness, the term is literal. I literally battled it out with twigs, logs, tree branches…I can’t even describe the mayhem! The worst part was losing the regulation orange toque to a branch, turning around to retrieve it, only to get slapped in the face by another branch. And the fact that it had snowed the night before, soaking everything in sight, made it that much more painful.
So with a bit of instruction as to what direction I was to walk in (very important for someone who gets disoriented as often as I do), I was left to my own devices in front of a barb wire fence.
Let’s get one thing straight…I despise barb wire fences. DESPISE them. When I have to cross over/under/through one, I fear for my life. I honestly don’t know how cows and deer get through them (in my grandpa’s words, “Deer and cow…dey get through no probrem.”) Usually, if I encounter one, someone is usually there to lend a hand (and a foot), gently guiding me through. On this particular morning, the fence was in the way, and no one was around to coax me through it. Already behind The Men, and feeling frustrated with my stupid fear, I thought I would just step on the wire and hop over.
No dice. I didn’t have enough poundage to weigh it down. So I did the only thing I could do…I went through it.
I placed the gun gently on the ground on the other side, stepped on the bottom wire, and with all my strength, pushed the top 2 wires as high as I could, and stumbled through. I was alive. It was a miracle.
Barb wire fences were “no probrem” after that!
From there, I carried on, battling tree branch after tree branch, rotting log after rotting log…I was working up quite the sweat, and didn’t realize that my jeans were completely soaked from the melting snow. EVERYTHING was wet, and therefore dirty and muddy. But I didn’t care, because I had to catch up with The Men.
Once in a while, Trav’s dad would call out to make sure I was
still alive okay. I was falling behind a bit, due to my womanliness (Trav told me that I was supposed to plow through everything, and break whatever got in my way…like a man). Frustrated, I started to charge through, gun in hand, when SNAP! I got whipped in the face by a branch!
Furious, I broke more things, crunching, snapping, swearing, and finally made it out of the bush. Alive. Trav met up with me after and said he thought he heard someone crashing through the bush…he figured I must’ve fallen over a log or something. Nice.
When we were all out, we re-convened and discussed what had happened. While in the bush, we had seen 3 deer that we tried to chase out, but the people posting (i.e. not pushing bush) didn’t see anything come out.
We tried again, in another field. This time, I got to sit down and wait for the deer to come out. No less than 15 minutes had passed when two deer, a doe and her calf, flew out of the bush. My heart started pumping when I heard Trav’s dad take the first shot, then the second. They ran across the road, unharmed, disappearing into the shelterbelt.
I was a little relieved, but more excited than anything. The first shots of the day!
By the time we got home, we were starved. Luckily, there were leftover sloppy joes waiting in the crock pot. After a long, hard early afternoon, I was ready for a nap. But alas, there was more hunting to be done…
Stay tuned for Part 2: “Oh Deer.” (Please…don’t tell me you weren’t expecting that one…)