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Thursday, June 26, 2014

LARD AND FLOUR


Biscuits and Gravy


It was still spring time and we were trying to get the plowing done so we could get the crops in.

It looked like we were going to have plenty of fruit for the trees were in full blossom. The bees were working and it would be time to add a super to the top of the hive if things kept up like this.

The canned goods from last year were gone and the garden wouldn’t be producing until a month from now. We still had part of a 25 lb. sack of flour and the forty pound stand of lard was one fourth filled. This meant we could have biscuits and gravy every day and not starve.

Since there wasn’t anything pressing I decided to get my rifle and go hunting. The dogs were already out ahead of me and I checked my box of shells and saw I had half a box of 22s so I was set.

I usually could get a squirrel or rabbit with each shell. We hunted through where I usually found something but there was no luck today. The dogs weren’t for giving up so we went deeper into the woods until the trees were almost a 100 foot tall.

After a half hour one of the dogs started treeing and then the others joined in.

I didn’t know whether to trust a couple of the dogs for they treed by smell but Zeke always treed by sight.

If Zeke was barking you could be sure there was something up there. I started looking around the middle of the tree and saw nothing. Then I moved on up looking very careful so as not to miss anything till I finally got up to the top of the tree and after looking for 15 minutes there was nothing that came into my view.

I repeated starting in the middle and went to the top and there was nothing.  The tree forked near the top but I could see there wasn’t anything in the fork.  Then I began to circle around the tree several times but… nothing. I was getting tired of this foolishness and if Zeke wasn’t with me I would have given up. I looked at him and asked “Is there anything up there boy”?

He took a couple of steps further around the tree with his head looking up and he barked. When he did that I knew without a doubt there was meat in the tree.

I told Zeke to walk on around the tree and told him sic-em.

He walked around the tree slowly and as I waited looking up three squirrels came around the tree. They had been going around the tree out of sight as I walked around it. But when Zeke circled they exposed themselves.

I knew they had to be up there for Zeke was right every time. He wouldn’t bark unless he could see it. I stepped back about forty feet so I could get a better angle for my shot but it was a pretty long shot and I had to pull a fine sight on the squirrel if I was going to hit him.

I held my breath so my breathing wouldn’t throw my aim off and fired. I hit the one I shot at and ran to the foot of the tree to get the squirrel before the dogs could chew him up. I waited… and he didn’t fall.

I knew the dogs didn’t get him for we were looking right at each other. I went back from where I was when I shot and rehashed the event…no I’m sure I hit him and he was falling.

I stared upward for some time and then I saw him. He had lodged in the fork of the tree. I’m on the ground and our dinner was 80 feet above me. I couldn’t see enough of him to get a shot and try to knock him out of the fork but I took a couple anyway to no avail.

It was getting late and soon I wouldn’t be able to see well enough to get a bead on anything so I repeated the process and another came around and this time I had positioned myself so the squirrel wouldn’t fall into the fork. My next shot dropped the squirrel to the ground. I had to quickly get to the dogs and take my dinner out of the dog’s mouth.

It was getting near to biscuit time when I got back home. Everybody was pleased to see something to go with our biscuits and gravy. It didn’t take long to skin and prepare him for our dinner.

Hearing him sizzling in the lard was a sweet sound. It was good to have a good meal before we went to bed that night but I was wondering if the hens had laid some eggs for our breakfast.
I planned to check the hen house early in the morning.

Finis

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