All posts by Rob Darnell

The First Day of a New Year

It’s January 1, the first day of 2019. I always launch a new work plan on Jan 1 and this year is no exception.

I finished my deer hunting season yesterday. It was unsuccessful. I saw four deer in the entire season, from Oct 1 to Dec 31. I didn’t get a shot at any of them. The fourth deer, I saw yesterday, and by the time I noticed it was there, it was already running away.

I’m bummed about not getting a deer. I had a three year streak. I’d gotten a deer every year for three years. In those three years, I had seen a lot of deer. What did I do wrong in 2018?

Because I didn’t get a deer, I’m going to take the money I was saving to cover the processing costs and use it to buy a supply of meat from the Brower Farms in Brown City. They have good deals for beef, pork and chicken. I’ll probably choose one of their bundle options.

I had the appraisal for my house yesterday. I should have the results in a few days. I’m a little nervous. The appraisal will need to show that the house is worth the price that my landlord and I agreed on or there will be problems and I might not be able to buy it.

Everyone else involved seems confident that everything will be fine. So, I’m trying to not worry too much. I just really don’t want to lose my house.

My brother made side by side Before/After pictures of the house. I’m going to post them here. It makes it easier to see how different the house is after the work.

The Work is Done

They finished working on the house yesterday. You can see the Before pictures here. I added a couple updates to that post today, so you can see the old appliances.

Here are the After pictures. Originally, I had the wanted the new siding to be the same color as the old siding, but my landlord brought over a sample board of different siding colors and I liked the Oxford Blue best. My favorite color is blue, especially light blue. So, it’s nice having a house that’s my favorite color.

So, I chose the siding and I chose the new appliances. I cooked pork chops on the new stove last night. It works great. There was beer in the new fridge, but I just drank it all.

The appraisal will be Monday.

George H. W. Bush

George H. W. Bush. I was twelve when he became President. I remember sending him a letter about my desire to join the military when I turned eighteen and asking if he could do something to change the rules that prevent deaf and hard of hearing people from serving.

I received a reply sometime later with an autographed picture of George Bush and Dan Quayle. The reply said something about congress needing to vote on it and all that, and there were a few words of encouragement, though it was really just a form letter put together by someone on the White House staff. I don’t know if Bush ever actually saw my letter.

I believe he was a good man.

Why do I hunt?

I blogged about this buck Saturday night. Adele commented on Facebook, saying “Yes, he’s a beautiful animal. Why not let him live?”

Peggy explained that the buck could feed me for a year, and if I or someone else doesn’t get him, he will die anyway.

That is one reason, but there’s more to it than that. I’d just come off a nine hour hunt and I was too tired to write last night. Since my answer is long, I’m going to make it a blog entry.

“Why not let him live?”

Yes, one reason I hunt is for the meat. I love venison. I’m not saying I wouldn’t eat store-bought deer meat, but I find that hunting saves me money.

Now that buck in the picture, he’s huge. He would yield a lot of meat. He might feed me for a year, or six months or three months, depending on how much of him I eat each day. Yes, he is a beautiful animal. He’s magnificent and majestic. I’m betting he’s the king of deer in my area. He probably has respect from all the deer for miles. I’m thrilled that he even set foot on my hunting ground. But if I ever have the opportunity to shoot him, I’m not going to pass it up.

I appreciate the vote of confidence that I might actually shoot this majestic buck. That buck in the picture, he didn’t get that big by being a fool. He’s been dodging hunters his whole life. Every hunter dreams of shooting a buck like that. Very few ever accomplish that feat. Most of us are lucky if we ever get a buck at all. If the best hunters haven’t shot that buck yet, what are the odds that I would shoot him?

I’m not an expert hunter. I still think of myself as a beginner. I’ve killed three antlerless deer.

Peggy is right. If I or someone else doesn’t get that buck, he’ll die anyway. I reckon that’s what will happen. He’ll kneel over and die of old age, and will probably feed the coyote when he does.

But is there any deer that you wouldn’t say is a beautiful animal and suggest I let live? I can’t help thinking that the better question would be “Why do you hunt?” To that, I don’t have a satisfying answer. I can’t really explain to myself why I love hunting.

I can tell you that deer hunting is one of my passions. I look forward to deer season all year and I get excited when it finally arrives. I enjoy deer hunting so much that I often don’t want to come in when hunting hours are over, no matter how cold it is. I wish I could hunt all night.

I can tell you what I like about hunting. Getting a supply of meat at a lower cost is one benefit. But it’s more than that. I guess the thing I like most is the challenge. Outsmarting a wild animal is not easy.

If I ever get a buck, it would be a glorious day for me. I would proudly display its rack on my wall, like an accomplishment trophy. As I said, most of us never get a buck. Even a two-point buck is a big accomplishment for most hunters.

If I ever got a buck like the one in the picture, I would be amazed that I managed to do that. That buck is a wise one. He doesn’t slip up much.