Bob Baugh and I had driven up to Haney’s ranch to chase some quail and this particular hunt stands out in my memory for a number of reasons.
Our first afternoon, we had enjoyed good hunting and the next day as well. Sonny, my Brittany’s, work finding and retrieving the birds was excellent and we welcomed the steaks cooked over Rick’s “old timey”, fired brick, barbeque pit. After the meal we talked for a long time about hunting, ranching and business and turned in around midnight.
The night was cold and Rick’s old ranch house, built in the 1900’s, was drafty and hard to heat. As usual, Rick was hidden under his covers with his AC running full blast, when I was jolted awake by my door being thrown open and Bob running through my room in his long-johns, .357 Magnum in hand, shouting, “Where is that son of a bitch, I’ll shoot him if I catch him!” He continued his “hunt” for several minutes, bursting into Rick’s room and awakening him, and then, Bob told us his story.
He said, “I woke up and saw someone/something standing at the foot of my bed. Then it ran and opened the door to Jon’s room and I’m sure it ran through his room.” By that time, Bob had armed himself and given pursuit. He added, ”When I chased it into Rick’s room, I “lost” it.” We looked around inside the house and found nothing, no sign of anyone else with us and both outside doors were locked.
Rick went into his patented speech about having to sleep out here often and not wanting to disturb anything. Bob said, “But something was standing by my bed.” Rick laughed, made sure his AC was roaring, got back into his bed, slipped his cap over his ears and covered his head with the covers.
Two years later, Rick “rebuilt” the old ranch house, and even before the stonemason had finished his work, the rock wall on one side of the house developed a serious crack. Rick said, “We put too much load on the rocks.” I answered, “Sounds like something didn’t like it being rebuilt.” The old house burned down during the summer of 2011, the grass fires around Abilene were the cause, and, I guess it chased the ghosts out too!
Bob still doesn’t like to talk about the chase.