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Perseverance.  Focus.  Endurance.

 
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, (2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.)
        Hebrews 12:1-2
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Blog Archives - 2012
Open Season

I know, I know, this post is WAY overdue, my apologies!! But, as you all very well know, hunting season is in full swing! Groves, fields, and government land all become infested with hunters decked out in blazing orange apparel. Deer stands are finally put back into use. Shots contstantly ring through the air from dawn to dusk. Day in and day out, it really is an exciting time-even though I pity Bambi-and yes, even I took part in the "festivities" by gutting a deer. Mostly by myself...WITHOUT gagging, might I add. But as a countryside runner who sticks primarily to backroads & forest trails, this glorious time of year gets to be tedious. Why? Well think about it. I'm running at the crack of dawn...during hunting season....in the middle of thick groves....during hunting season....amid hundreds of animal being preyed upon by y'all marksmen....did I mention this is all taking place during hunting season? Naturally, I feared getting shot down by an oblivious troupe of inexperienced hunters, but hey, I did my part as a humble citizen to combat this; I went out and got my paws on a bright orange hat. (Thanks Austin!) While it sure won't fend off flying bullets, the cap gives me some reassurance in it's ability to (hopefully) ward of blatant stupidity. And now, here are a few of my favorite encounters with you hunters during my runs. Drum roll, please:

 

1) So I'm on my 6th mile, going strong, having a great run. Along comes a truckload of college-age guys, guns in hand and ridiculous-looking orange vests taking center stage. They slow down and ask me, "Hey! Are you out here hunting?" They're dead serious. Like no smirks or chuckles. And here I am, wearing running shoes, tights, and a 5K shirt, accessorizing with my orange hat. Me? Hunting? So I answer, "Yeah, I am, actually. I just killed this here deer and I'm hauling it back home, care to join me?" They look around with quizzical expressions on their faces and reply, "Where's the deer?" Facepalm moment right there.

 

2) It's 6:30 am. I'm just finishing up my last mile and pass yet another truckload of hunters clustered around the back drinking coffee and gobbling warm pastries. I hear a "Hey! Hey wait up!" as I try to run past inconspicuously (in vain, of course). I jog over and they invite me to have a cuppa with them 'cause it's "so dang cold that hell's gonna freeze over" and I oblige. Turns out, this group of old men have been doing this hunting tradition for over 40 years! They were extremely kind and we all had a good laugh exchanging hilarious stories from "back in the day." Here's the best part, after about half an hour of good natured socializing, I was ready to head out. But as I fell back into an even pace, I heard one of the old geezers call out, "Don't get shot!" Fantastic.

 

3) This is my favorite one. I was drinking coffee and composing a tweet when I heard a car horn outside of my house. I peeked my head out to be greeted by a couple of middle-age men with bewildered expressions on their faces. ME: Hello gentlemen, can I, uh, help you? THEM: Well, we were just drivin' past when we saw your albino deer in your there grove. That's sumpin, I ain't seen no albino deer 'round here. Ever! ME: *eyebrows raised* Albino deer? Do you mean my pony? My white pony? Snickers? THEM: Well can we shoot it? That still counts, don't it? ME: Um. No. *facepalm*

 

Ah yes, hunting season. What a joyous time. Hey, I didn't get shot yet, so I'd say this has been one successful season. Good luck to all hunters! Oh, and please refrain from shooting at the chick with an orange cap and her white pony.

 

Happy Trails!

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