It was just like most late afternoons after a Thanksgiving feast: a lot of slugging around. Then I decided to get my bow out and practice before I went on my evening hunt. I used my usual spot, the front yard, as my practice range. Looking back that was a bad choice, because of course I soon had an audience. I was first just trying not to miss the target altogether, but I was really finding my groove when my father-in-law and uncle-in-law found their way to the front porch. That’s when the afternoon started to go downhill.
I just shot my last arrow when they started the ‘Remember when’ game. As in, “Remember when we had our bows and we didn’t even practice and we could shoot them in a tighter group than that? Remember when we could shoot a rabbit running at 50 yards?” Yeah, right.
Me: “I wasn’t trying to shoot them in a group, I was putting one in the middle of each circle so I don’t damage my arrows.”
Then started the ‘I bet’ game.
Them: “I bet you can’t hit your own arrows, let’s just see how close you can group three.”
Well of course, being a guy, I can’t resist a challenge like that.
I put three arrows so close you could lay a silver dollar over the holes, but that didn’t matter. They immediately moved on to “Anybody could do that, why when I was your age….” You get the idea.
Them: “You can shoot pretty could up close but I bet it won’t shoot very far.”
Me: ”It’ll shoot far enough we couldn’t ever see where it went.”
Them: “Whatever, there’s no way we couldn’t not see that arrow. How far do you think it’ll shoot?”
Me: “I don’t know… maybe over the hill? I’m sure not going to try it because these arrows are expensive.”
Them: “OVER THE HILL, no way, I bet you can’t shoot that far.”
Me: “Well sure I can, but like I said the arrows are expensive.”
Them: “Tell you what, my brother will bet you a hundred dollars you can’t get the arrow over the hill.” Each of them was committing the other brother to make the bet. Here’s where I should have gone ahead and went to my deer stand – it would have been a more productive afternoon.
On and on they heckled, laughing at how crazy it was to think an arrow could go over the hill. Finally, I couldn’t stand it any more. And thus began the great hunt for the Thanksgiving arrow.
To be continued….