Since then I've also visited my brother-in-law in Arkansas to go squirrel hunting. I had high hopes of making this Squirrel Gumbo.
So what happened?
Well, for one thing, I got skunked. Seems those country squirrels aren't quite as insouciant as their city cousins. I saw one all day and it made sure to keep plenty of brush between us before high-tailing out of sight.
More importantly, I must confess that I have not yet grown accustomed to walking the woods with a firearm. All my life I've been outfitted with binoculars or a compass or a mushroom knife—at most, a fishing rod. Bushwhacking around with a gun, truth be told, feels decidedly different. Suddenly I'm an interloper, an antagonist.
Yes, I realize this is all in my head, but that doesn't make it any easier.
I've also made a conscious decision to embrace my love of mushroom hunting and see where that leads. No doubt you've noticed the uptick in fungal-related posts.
Maybe the hurry-up mode with which I first approached hunting, as if trying to make up for lost time, was a mistake. Some things are easier to learn as a kid. Foreign languages and skiing, for instance. Given a choice, I think I'd rather go a-wandering with shotgun in hand than try conjugating Spanish verbs. So this is not the end of my short-lived hunting career, just a speed bump.
In case you were wondering.