A Ten Pound Bag
Chapter 48: Baby Needs New Shoes!

Copyright© 2020 by Emmeran

The kids needed new shoes. Michelle passed that on to me from Matilda; no I don’t know how, but I was tasked with going out and getting us some leather. I had a sneaking suspiscion that this wasn’t going to be difficult, without a doubt the deer had already found our corn field and keeping them out of it was going to be my bigger problem.

First step was to build a small bridge across the creek, this we could do in a day. So down to the creek us four guys went; myself, Holder, Amos, and Brin with logging tools in hand to harvest some lengths of birch logs. We figured we could get the basic job done with a dozen or so logs of about twenty foot in length, as long as we could get the dog cart across it would do the job.

With two grown men chopping and one teenager trimming it went pretty fast, the logs were all down and trimmed before dinner. It didn’t take more than about ten minutes to drop a suitable birch once you got used to doing it. We decided to wait until after dinner to bring the tractor down and lay the logs across the creek gully. We then planned to bind them together with some rope and we’d have a basic bridge for horses and people.

Dinner routine and then next thing you know we’re laying down clay on top of our bridge to keep people and animals from turning their ankles. We’d add planks later on but splitting logs into planks was time consuming and would have to wait. Amos and Brin raced back and forth over it a few times showing off their youthful exuberance, I merely stood back and smiled. The London Bridge it was not but it was my first bridge and I felt pretty damned good about it.

By the time we’d cleaned and put away all the tools supper was being prepared. We did our chores, cleaned ourselves up and sat down to partake.

After supper was time for indoor work, we resharpened out axes and knives, discussed plans for the next day and generally unwound. We had a reading every night, usually a fable or fairy tale. I ran my nightly scan and did some research on the area. All of that data I had pulled when I was contemplating investing in Oscar’s farm was coming in very handy these days.

I cleaned and oiled my 30.06, I had some hunting to do early the next morning.

Up before the dawn, that was me. The air was chilly and moist and the coffee seemed to take forever to get going. Surprisingly Holder was up with me, I welcomed the company and he saddled our horses and pack mule while I ran a quick IR pass over our area. Just as I’d hoped there was a herd of deer at the back edge of the cornfield destroying our tasty young corn.

I zoomed in until I could identify a good young buck and we rode out quietly just as the eastern edge of the sky began to lighten. Brin came with us and heel’d up as commanded, he was like a black ghost keeping watch over us.

The buck was still there eating away at my future whiskey when we got in range, the corn was still short enough that I had a clear shot from the kneeling at 300 yards. The morning air was still and the sky had grown light enough that I could clearly make him out. There were five or six does nearby and I didn’t want to injure any over them with a missed shot so I waited, thirty seconds later the shot was clear and I released the round.

When I tried out for the division rifle team back in my Marine Corps days, I had a very good coach and one of the things he taught me was to “release” the round rather than “shoot” the round. The passive term seemed to improve accuracy over the aggressiveness of shooting; I wasn’t good enough to make the team but I learned a lot from that coach.

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