Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Drive - A Memoir 56th Installment

and cars filling the parking lots, but even though we hardly ever see two cars together at the same time, we have high mountain deserts and meadows with creeks running through them. He could tell about thousands, maybe millions of people crowded together in huge cities, where we only have about one person per square mile in Idaho, but this was just the way Russ and I liked it: no people, just the free and wild country. You know, forget about tales of the city, I’m sure the people there are happy, but I don’t think their life can compare with ours.

Chapter 13
It was only a couple of weeks later; we were finishing repairs on the south fence line. Idaho is an open range state meaning that cattle may graze where ever they darn well please, and it’s up to the landowner to fence them out of his farm. The open range law even holds a rancher faultless if his cows are on the road causing a car wreck – dead people and all. The Old Man was particular about keeping well maintained fences because he hated range cattle eating his crops, and he hated hunters from the city shooting the geese! Vernon saves the geese so he and his friends can shoot them all. A wild Canadian goose is good eaten’ although it is somewhat greasier and chewier than chicken but still a substantial meal.

I remember one time Vernon had told this bunch of Idaho Falls hunters that they couldn’t hunt on our place. Our farm was near the border of the Camas National Refuge, and the geese were protected in the refuge where they nest, but when they came to the farm to eat grain, we could shoot them (in season of course). The Idaho Falls hunters had watched where the flock of about forty geese would land every morning, and they wanted to shoot them real bad, but the Old Man had told them “NO!” A couple of days later the Old Man got up at 3:00 a.m., for whatever reason old people get up in the night, and he noticed a light bouncing around a couple of miles into the desert. The farm was seven miles from the road that runs from Terreton to Rexburg. He piled into his pickup and drove to the wheat field and walked to the south fence by the moon light. He knew every bump and badger hole in his place so driving and walking by dead reckoning was easy for him. He met the hunters at the fence, and threatened them to stay off his farm. The city slickers were surprised they got caught, after they had walked miles through the desert to poach geese on private land. They became quite infuriated, to say the least. They paced back and forth raising and lowering their guns, talking among themselves, and then stomping around some more. I’m sure Vern was thinking he should have brought his shotgun

500 more words tomorrow

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