#252: The Hunter, Part 1

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A hunter is, according to Merriam Webster, “a person who hunts game” or “one that searches for something.” Being a hunter means having a designated objective in your sights, whether that’s the prey you are after or whatever object you are searching for. Hunting involves a lot of material and natural skill and the ability to think quickly on your feet. You have to know so much about wildlife, the outside world, the outdoors themselves. I know a decent amount about computers, but nothing at all when it comes to nature. I’m more of an absent-minded hiker. A few of my friends became boy scouts when they were young, and they could probably take me through the forest and point out the name of every little flower and beetle we pass by.

My grandfather was a hunter, and he regularly would take trips out westward with his friends for the purpose of hunting game. He’d drive his Jeep Grand Cherokee Sport from 1999 out to Oregon or Montana or wherever their hearts were set on. I wouldn’t see him for a week or more, and then he’d come back with some new stories. He had a room in his garage full of guns and ammunition and assorted game mounted on the walls that he had hunted throughout the years, from all of his various trips. He would take me into this room from time to time, show me around, and marvel at some of the heads he had displayed on the walls. I never really knew what to think of them, aside from that they were obviously impressive in the sense that it must have taken a lot of skill and gall and wherewithal to take that on by yourself. He was a trusted and notable member of his local hunting lodge in East Haven, and people there knew him by his first name.

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