Monday, May 4, 2009

Girls And The Great Outdoors

WARNING: Do NOT read this post if you are a member of PETA or are anti-NRA. I promise, you will be offended by the politically incorrect views held here.

Lest you think from yesterday's post that I have become all hoity toity or something since moving to Texas, let me reassure you that I am still a country girl, born and bred.

As a matter of fact, while in the 'Reading Room' the other day I came across an article in Jim's Texas Fish and Game magazine entitled 'No Daughter Left Behind'. Chester Moore, TF&G's editor, wrote about the adoption of their little girl and the reaction that some people had that he and his wife were not adopting a little boy instead. I guess most people assume that a man who lives and breathes the great outdoors must desire a son to carry on the legacy.

As I finished the article, I considered writing an email to Mr. Moore letting him know that I too grew up in a family where hunting and fishing were not considered a 'man's sport' but rather a family heritage to be passed on to future generations.

It is true that when I was a little girl, the men stayed at the deer camp and the womenfolk and children came out to visit on Sundays. Until the day they tore it down, the camp remained mainly the men's gathering place...but that doesn't mean that there weren't women in the woods with their shotguns or rifles most hunts.

I took my first deer when my second daughter was just days old. My dad had to help me out and it was years later before I harvested my second one...but I never considered that a woman shouldn't be in the deer woods. At least, not until we came to Texas.

All five of our children have spent time on a deer stand. Four of the five have harvested at least one in their lifetime. I was with two of them for their first trophy. Jim was with one and my dad was with the other. One prefers to use a camera to document her 'hunt'. One of our sons may never fire another shot at an animal...and that's okay, too.

As to fishing, I am not a huge fan unless there is something biting...but both of my grandmothers spent almost as much time with a baited hook in the water as my grandfathers did. Both boys enjoy it and two of our daughters. In the other one's defense, she was caught by her brother with a hook in the chin during her impressionable preteen years so she stays FAR away from fishing rods these days.

I really don't get the ''boys club" mentality surrounding hunting and fishing in Texas. I will never forget the first time I told a Ladies Sunday School class that I would be out the following week because I was going to the deer lease. You could see the shock on some of their faces...surely I wasn't going to get on a deer stand WITH A GUN, was I?

So, if you were reading yesterday's post and thinking that we have become too citified with our theater outings to be out with the rest of the family at the Pine Lodge Inn this fall...I will be grabbing my 270 and heading to the 'big timber' don't you dare beat me to my stand! Not only will Jim, the kids and I be there, but when they get a little bigger, so will the grandchildren. We are hoping to pass it along.


Miss August said...

Good for you!
I never had the chance to do any hunting but I do love fishing. I did try to shoot a rabbit once!

My very first valentine's gift from Paul after we got married was a rifle. At that time, we went out to the shooting range most weekend.

Stacy said...

ah, being a farmer's daughter, I know about harvesting, just not when it comes to deer.

Anonymous said...

Even though I grew up in the same hunting and fishing family, I never got into the hunting part and I only enjoy fishing if they are biting really good. My girls like to fish and if they had ever wanted to go hunting with their dad, they would have been allowed to go. We've never said you're a girl and girl's can't do that. I think anyone should be able to do what they enjoy, as long as it's not illegal or immoral, regardless of their sex.


Fonda said...

Stacy, I know what you mean. When I was growing up only farmers harvested we can't say we kill a deer, we harvest it. It sounds less violent! Ha.

I still can't get over the thought of August with a rifle!

And Rita...I will only stay in the boat if I can get a bite at least once every five to ten minutes. If it goes over that, let me OUT! Patience is not my strong suit. Remember how Grandma and Grandpa could fish all day every day at the lake...biting or not?

Miss August said...

Paul and I use to shoot a lot. I learned how to clean and handle guns and rifle from him. :)