Monday, December 15, 2008

Monday Morning Madness

Sorry so light lately, my friends. Between the hunting trip and then lots of family time yesterday (brunch with Santa, Christmas Tree raising/decorating, etc), I've been a little behind on the blogging. Today, I'm sitting in the Red Carpet Club at Dulles (my God, I hate those trams out to the terminals), ten feet away from Senator Richard Lugar and his staff, apparently off to somewhere important, discussing nuclear arms issues (no really, they are), on my way back out to Sunnyvale for the week. Sort of an end of year management round-up out there, should be interesting.

Of note, could be sitting under the basket Wednesday night with three fraternity bros watching the Stanford game. Haven't seen these guys in years, but there is a contingent of Sigma Chis out there and we've talked about a little socializing.

About the hunt. Mudge could not have been a more gracious host. We arrived Friday night and feasted on a wonderful venison and andouille sausage chili. Mudge had hats and blaze orange vests personalized for us, with the "Hunting Sea-sons" Hunt Club emblazoned on them. We drove late in the evening over to one of Mudge's several residences (he's a bit of a tycoon by Eastern Shore standards) where I and two others would bunk. Good cigars and fine whiskey were consumed (never fear, I managed to resist--the whiskey, that is) and fantastic conversation was had. Here's another reason I couldn't stay in the Navy anymore...I'm not a good story-teller. I've come to realize that the story-telling gene just didn't get passed to me. It isn't that I can't express myself, it is that i simply don't have a good memory for things like that. And being a good story teller seems to be part of the qualification package for being an admiral.

We arose early Saturday, but there would be no bird hunting this day, as the fields were soggy/covered over. I suppose there was a chance for ducks later in the day, but we proceeded to our deer stands after a fantastic breakfast at the Exmore Diner (I ate "sausage links" that came as a single, elongated link. Of course, there was much speculation as to how it might reappear later after its gastrointestinal journey). Here's the deal with hunting from a deer stand---it isn't the most interesting thing in the world. You survey your surroundings over and over, you think you hear things (I didn't have my hearing aids in, so I probably had even less of a problem than most), and then, if you've been up until 0130, you begin to nod off. Because I hadn't tightened my hold strap, had I fallen, I would have been arrested after about a nine foot fall, just before hitting the ground. This did not seem like a good deal to me, so I had to fight the urge to sleep--over, and over, and over again.

We sat in our stands for a few hours, none of the four of us so much as thinking we saw a deer. I knew this would drive Mudge wild, as he so wanted this to go well. Never fear Mudge, it did go well! We then climbed down, had a little lunch, and then took up positions on the ground in propitious spots should the fellas on the next property over hunting with dogs flush deer our way. This they did not do.

We packed it in, then went home where Mudge whipped up an amazing steak dinner, with the best fake mashed potatoes I've ever tasted. He also made these duck breast roll-ups that were to die for. One of the guys needed to go back over to the bunk house to collect up his stuff, as he had to head back over to Va Beach that night. He returned, ate dinner, and left--taking with him the only set of keys to the bunk house (not really a bunk house--it ia a nice little cottage with all the amenities--which now included all of our stuff which we could not get access to). So we stayed at Mudge's house and bedded down for the night.

Up early and back to Easton for the brunch with Santa--Mudge and one other went off to Mudge's weekly Sunday morning breakfast with the Onancock Illuminati, a breakfast that takes place in a tower built on waterfront land belonging to one of the crowd.

You know, you hang out with a guy for nearing 20 years, and you learn new things about him. Mudge is an AMAZING host. He should run a bed and breakfast/hunting service. Everything was thought about, the food was wonderful, the fellowship was superb. I think this could become an annual event--at least I hope it will. But I also want to just drive down and sit in a blind with Mudge and his boys someday. I'd like to take up hunting, but only if the company is as good as it was this weekend.

I'll try and hit the site hard before going to bed tonight.

1 comment:

Mudge said...

You are a very forgiving guest. But make no mistake, with guests the likes of the Hunting Sea Sons, it is hard to screw up a weekend at the camp. Thanks for coming and for the (overly) kind words. Geese come back into season this weekend. We'll get out there again.

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