I moved to small town Bluff Country from the Big City almost some fifty years ago. Here, in southeastern Minnesota, I began a teaching career, married and helped raise a family. It was and is the good life. Living in the country brought the opportunity to have my first dog. He was what today would be called a "designer" dog. Then he was called a mutt. He was half Golden Retriever and half German Shorthair Pointer. His name was Max. He looked like the Marley of movie fame.
Unbeknowst to me at the time he would turn out to be the perfect bird dog. I took up the sport and pursued it for decades. Max was followed by two Chesapeake Bay Retrievers. My sons also came to enjoy hunting.
I gave up hunting several years ago now. My sons were grown up and gone, with sloughs ditched and drained, a bad knee and No Trespassing everywhere, it seemed the right time. Missing the loyal companionship of my hunting dogs, I went in a new direction and got a German Shepherd, Baron. Now, I’m into long walks with him, my binoculars and camera in hand. Still hunting birds though in a different way now.
Thus, it was with great pleasure to open a package sent to me by EcoRover (Pat Munday) and find a book by Paul Vang, Sweeter Than Candy. Sweet it proved to be. It was if I was transported back in time to those wonderful years of tramping the prairies, picked fields and along fence lines. Jump shooting along small creeks for ducks and the occasional goose. Then, there were the oak woods and brushy bottoms. The aspen bottoms, where the elusive grouse wereto be found. What a trip down memory lane as each chapter seemed to trigger a smile and even some chuckles about all the birds I missed. If you liked bird hunting you’ll love this book. I highly recommend it.