Sunday, November 20, 2011

Opening day

I live on twenty acres in a very rural area of upstate New York.  It's usually fairly quiet here, the dirt road that I live on gets very little traffic and the neighbors are all just out of sight.
Eleven months out of the year, Tanner and I hike all over and my friends and I enjoy riding through the woods all around us.  Then comes November and all hell breaks loose.

Everyone starts getting ready for deer season and the weeks running up to opening day the weekend before Thanksgiving, are filled past enduring with the noise of shooting.  Rifle season always brings with it waves of armed men in orange coats and large pickup trucks making the four hour drive from New York City and New Jersey in search of the elusive buck (or maybe just a cold beer and a chance to wander around in the woods armed with high powered rifles).  Way too many of them come up here with thousands of rounds of ammunition and many cases of beer.  A terrifying combination. 

While most of hunters I encounter every year are polite, respectful and seem to know what they are doing, there are many others who are arrogant, obnoxious and can't tell the difference between a white tailed deer and a jersey cow.

Despite the fact that Tanner and I stay out of the woods at this time of year and limit our walks to public roads, I get hassled or threatened at least once every year.  Because of this I always worry about my animals and take precautions.

Tanner:  This again??
 Me:  Hey, you're visible
This year, I have Emma to worry about as well and even I have to admit she is vaguely (very vaguely) deer like.  So, she is suffering the indignities of the season as well.  

A good friend stopped over for a visit and to let me know how terribly ridiculous my poor, abused donkey looked in her outfit.  Meanwhile, I couldn't help but notice that I could not have have color-coordinated them better if I had tried.  (I did have very strict instructions not to use this photo but I have never been good at taking orders.)
We may not be dignified but we will be seen (and hopefully, not shot).

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