Monday, March 20, 2017

Drive - A Memoir 72th Installment

took the harpoon to the creek and had a blast harpooning sucker fish. The only problem was adjusting our aim because of the refraction of the water. When the pole was lowered toward the bottom, and you would thrust it at a sucker fish, you would miss by a few inches. The water seemed to make the pole bend because as the pole emerged from water, the light from below the surface of the water bends when it leaves the water. The harpoon part immersed in water looks bent due to refraction: the light waves to your eye changes direction at the surface of the water; your eyes see the light in a straight line and so the object looks like it is a different place. We quickly learned how far to compensate for refraction and could harpoon fish quite accurately. Harpooning them wasn’t as fun as snagging them because they put up less of a fight, but we had a good time anyway because of the challenge.

Chapter 18
What do you want to do?” I asked Russ. It was Tuesday, and Russ and I weren’t at work this afternoon. The parents were off doing business somewhere, and we were supposed to be watching the place.
Let’s shoot birds with the bow and arrow. Maybe we can get a magpie; they’re in the old tree where we built our tree house.” Russ suggested.

Nah, magpies are too smart; we couldn’t get close enough. We’d stalk around the tree, and they’d just stay out of range,” I complained.

You think they’re that smart?” Russ asked. “We’ve been close enough lots of times.”

Yeah, they’re that smart. When they’re squawking and taunting all through the trees, you can sneak into the house, come out with a gun, and vamoose…they’re gone. They see the gun and an instant later they’ve ‘flown the coop’ only to come back to squawk at us another day.” I said, resigned to the truth as I saw it.

However, Russ was still up to the challenge, “That’s why we use the bow. They don’t know that the arrow is for killing.”

They will. I’ll bet you a bottle of peas.” I challenged. I’m a real high roller when it comes to betting. We got the bow from the house, Russ was holding the strung bow to his side, and we were nonchalantly walking to the tree. When we arrived, all we saw was the rear ends of birds flying off in various directions. “I win, CAW, CAW,” I cawed louder than the fleeing birds.
No, wait! Listen,” Russ said, holding his middle finger to his lips. We heard them before we saw the fledglings, just able to flit from branch to branch but not old enough to fly away. ‘Bingo’! We had five target arrows, the kind with a blunt point, meant for target practice. We quickly split three and two, my loss; age has

500 more words tomorrow

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