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Sunday, March 30. 2014
This is another tale from the Haney Ranch. Mike Mitchell and I went up to help Rick rework his cattle pens, and after a long day and evening finally ate and went to bed late. Later that night, I was awakened from a sound sleep, hearing the â€œthunk, thunkâ€ of something walking around the porch. The weather was warm as I knocked on the door and went into Rickâ€™s room.
The AC was running full blast and the lump under a pile of covers must have been Rick. â€œYou hear that sound, someone walking around your porch?â€ I almost whispered. He uncovered, I noticed a watch cap on his head, he rose up and replied, â€œWhat sound, animals, Iâ€™m sure.â€ Rick blamed animals again, this was the second time he had done that?
Thinking to myself, how could he hear anything covered up like he was, with the AC roaring and with the watch cap on his head. Later that morning we talked about the â€œthunkingâ€ I had heard and Rick said again, â€œItâ€™s just those â€˜Dillos rooting around.â€
The next day more work on the cattle pens, and after steaks, we talked for a while and turned in early and I finally found out why Rick had such strange sleeping habits. Tonight, just like last night was warm, and I wasnâ€™t even covering with a sheet, when I woke up with a start! Whatâ€™s going on here, I was freezing! Then I noticed the foot of the bed was leaning and I sensed that something/someone was setting on the end of the bed. Whatâ€™s going on I asked myself, could this be a ghost, no way, I donâ€™t even believe in â€˜em!
Still freezing I said to the â€œwhateverâ€, â€œIâ€™m not afraid of you. I am a Christian and you donâ€™t scare me!â€ Then something really strange happened, whatever it was on the end of the bed got up, I could feel the end of the bed rise as if a load was removed, the â€œwhateverâ€ moved away and the room returned to a normal temperature. Personally, â€œitâ€ never bothered me again.
The next morning, when Rick and I had a chance to talk alone, I told him about my encounter the past night. His reply was, â€œI donâ€™t want to hear it.â€ He was uncomfortable I could tell, but I went on with the entire story. He replied, â€œI have heard things go â€œbumpâ€ in the night before, but I have to sleep out here three or four nights a week. Why do you think I run the AC all year, even in freezing weather, wear a watch cap and cover up with all of those quilts? I really donâ€™t want to talk about it.â€
It sounded like Rick was afraid of the â€œwhateversâ€ out here. This was the end of the story until the next time I came up.
Posted by Jon Bryan in Random Thoughts at 14:22 | Comments (0) | Trackbacks (0)
Monday, March 24. 2014
Slowly tapping the sixteen foot, Calcutta, cane pole tip on the surface, the bait, two pork rinds, attached to two hooks, seemed to slide and jump, just under water, beside the dead tree. An explosion on the surface, bigger than a â€œblow upâ€, and the big strike bent the long pole over half way down into the water. The pole sizzled through the water as the fish ran in a wide circle around the aluminum skiff.
Unceremoniously, hand over hand, I brought the big, bass to the surface, jerked it into the skiff, smiled and held it up for Buck to see. He said, returning my smile, â€œBoy, you handled the jigger pole just right!â€ The bass was over six pounds and a personal best for my attempts at jigging.
An eight, pound, bass was the best that I ever witnessed him catching. Buck said that his most exciting jigging event was in South Carolina when he caught an alligator, and in his words, â€œI quickly let go of the pole and let the â€˜gator worry about it.â€
He had learned this unique, fishing technique, jigging, and the manufacture of the equipment from, of all things, an old Indian (native American type). This same old Indian made a poultice to cure Buckâ€™s numerous sore throats, Buck drank the potion and passed out from the taste and the â€œfireâ€ in the mix, but after he awoke, he never had a sore throat again. It probably just ate out his tonsils!
Before WW II, Buck, my former father-in-law, lived in South Carolina, across the Cooper River from Charleston. Buck was a wild thing then, a Klansman, a former professional boxer, a tailor and a hunting and fishing guide. He once guided Nash Buckingham, maybe the best bob white, quail shot ever, on a duck and goose hunt on Currituck Sound, in North Carolina.
Buck perfected his jigging techniques in the numerous ponds and irrigation ditches in the South Carolina lowlands. He was an expert with a cane pole, jigging for fish, primarily for bass, but anything in fresh water will hit a jigged lure, even alligators!
Posted by Jon Bryan in Fishing at 09:54 | Comments (5) | Trackbacks (0)
Sunday, March 16. 2014
The pics started off with a very strange one (all the pics were shot through my kitchen window)! A doe was walking across my field and a bobcat had just caught a big mouse, at the same instant, I saw the doe and grabbed my camera, I caught both, but the doe didnâ€™t pay any attention to the bob and the bobcat scampered off for better cover! Notice the rain gauge.
The next pics are from last week and both show 6 doe, but in the different parts of the field. The first is just behind the fence that runs along the back of the house. The second is in the far left corner of the field, for perspective the rain gauge is shown. These doe are almost down to the shooting range.
More on the rain gauge, it's been almost dry all year, thereâ€™s been only a smidgen of moisture this year! Yesterday we had a good chance of rain, but it just missed us. It popped up in Hamilton County, passed through Coryell County, then on through McClennan County (Waco), then points east. We need a lot of rain!
Posted by Jon Bryan in Pictures at 12:28 | Comments (0) | Trackbacks (0)
Wednesday, March 12. 2014
My last trap shoot was in 1975, at the Moccasin Bend Trap Club, in Chattanooga, Tennessee, and we decided to make a family weekend out of it. The family piled into our camper (we didnâ€™t have a Suburban then) and we took the leisurely 2, hour drive from Sandy Springs, Georgia to Chattanooga and checked into the Chattanooga Choo-Choo, a real neat hotel converted from an old bunch of sleeper cars, complete with a dining car. In 2014, the kids still talk about it!
We visited â€œSee Ruby Fallsâ€, we saw â€œRuby Fallsâ€ and when they turned the lights out, we were appropriately scared! Not only did we see the advertisements on the barns along the freeway, but also we saw the Incline Railway, Lookout Mountain battlefield and Chickamauga, the site of the largest battle fought in the western theatre during our Civil War.
Sunday morning found us on the way to the gun club and I was going to surprise the good â€˜ole boys in Tennessee. Being a real â€œhotâ€ shooter out west, but not known east of the Mississippi, I â€œboughtâ€ myself in the Calcutta for a whopping $3.00, the minimum amount. The handicap event began, and I was placed with the long yardage shooters and I was breaking clays automatically. Walking to the last station and leading the shoot, the thought of my potential winnings, over $1,000.00 flashed through my mind and was quickly pushed out and my concentration returned.
â€œPull,â€ I barked and the clay pigeon wobbled out of the trap machine, a hard right bird, which I led and pulled the trigger, no Bam, no ignition of the shell. The puller/ scorekeeper called out â€œlost birdâ€ with just me looking funny at my trusty Remington 870, Trap Model Shotgun.
The trigger mechanism had broken. I had five minutes to fix the trigger, or get another gun, otherwise I would be disqualified and my only option was to get my ex-wifeâ€™s Remington 1100 Automatic, with a shortened stock.
I missed three out of the last five clays and finished second, which paid $200.00, plus another $150.00 from the Calcutta (not bad for 1975). So much for a big â€œhitâ€ and after this shoot, I retired myself from competitive shooting. My kids were very active in sports and my day job required too much of my time.
I say again, â€œSometimes a good day job can really interfere with your avocation.â€
Posted by Jon Bryan in Shooting at 08:56 | Comments (2) | Trackbacks (0)
Friday, March 7. 2014
New Yearâ€™s resolutions are a necessary evil and I donâ€™t subscribe to them any one bit, but to think that I made a quasi-resolution that I would go on a 5 day, posting schedule, really burns me up! Having made the quasi-resolution I had no idea at all that I would encounter computer problems, I was trying to move all of my stuff to Laylaâ€™s PC, with Randyâ€™s help and as someone famous, Robert Burns to be specific, once said something in this regard, â€œThe best laid plans of men and mice sometimes falter and gang awryâ€
My plans certainly faltered and gang awry, so much for the 5 day posting schedule, but I hope to resume posting somewhat regularly. Maybe not 5 days exactly, but never again will I make a quasi- New Yearâ€™s resolution, you see what trouble this led too!
So Iâ€™m back on my old computer, just wishing that I had succeeded in switching out the PCâ€™s!
Posted by Jon Bryan in Random Thoughts at 16:16 | Comments (0) | Trackbacks (0)
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