Monday, May 12, 2008


I had never shot a turkey until I was over 40 years old. There weren't any around when I was a kid and I didn't hunt in my 20's and 30's. (Too busy chasing other prey.)It was my father, who had begun hunting turkey in Cooperstown, with Ray Key, who introduced me to hunting the bird. Recented married, and desparately looking for a reason to get out of the house, in the early 90's I once again hit the woods. My first turkey I shot in the fall. It was a jake who flew over my head. I pulled up a borrowed 12 ga. and dropped him. The ground shook. Hell, this wasn't too hard. I think that was the last one I took on the fly.
My few attempts at businesses (that always fail) and hunting are what my father and I share in common. He's a big intellect,with a wry sense of humor and a razor sharp businessman acumen. And we disagree on just about everything. Thank goodness he's married to my mother or I probably wouldn't have much to do with him. The one thing we can agree upon is there's nothing like calling in a gobbling turkey in the spring woods. Most fathers and sons don't even have that.
Over the past 5 or so years he and my mom have had more than their share of health issues. So I was amazed, and pleased when he said they would both come over to NY for Mother's Day weekend and he would hunt with me. I had already shot my limit, so concentrated on calling for the old man. We drove his lumbering SUV up on the hill behind my brother Bird's house and set up in an area we knew had turkeys. After 1/2 hour of calling I got a gobble. For the next hour I tried to coax that bird in to no avail. We saw jakes and hens ....but no tom. Still, just to have the action and see birds, marked the day as a great success. He had the bug again. When that turkey sounded off and the old man gave me a thumbs up and took five minutes to situate himself and his ancient Parker shotgun against that tree, I knew I done good. I don't always seek his approval but when I get it, I must say, it sure feels good. Maybe next year we'll get that tom in.


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