Yesterday was the first day of Virginia's bow season for deer, and I committed a series of blunders, making me think that I wasn't quite ready for prime time. My first snafu started around 5:25 A.M. when I had one last task to complete before hopping in the Xterra and leaving to hunt in Craig County. All I had to do was put on my safety harness.
I don't like putting on a harness in the dark at the base of a tree because I always seem to become entangled in all the various belts. I struggled for a good five minutes trying to put on the harness before giving up and waking up Elaine. She was not amused at my incompetence at such an early hour, but as always she sweetly helped me put on the device. I am so fortunate to be married to her.
My next mishap took place at the base of the red oak where I wanted to position my treestand in the dark. While I was putting on my headlamp in preparation for ascending, somehow the battery compartment opened and spilled its contents onto the forest duff. I spent several precious minutes groping along the ground for the batteries, before giving up the search.
I didn't have a spare headlamp so I was forced to put my flashlight in my mouth and put up the stand with the aid of that light. I began to fear that the outing was going to be one of those proverbial bad days.
With all of those blunders and time loss, I was not secured in my treestand until 7:11 A.M., a good half hour later than I had intended. But at 7:18, a mature doe ambled by, I loosed an arrow, the shot was good, and I was home for lunch. Sometimes it truly is better to be lucky than good.