I'm thankful for much this holiday season. Good friends. A wonderful family. Great times together. A good job with great co-workers and boss and a good place to live with mostly decent folks and fairly low crime, being as I originally hail from Houston and grew up with crime. Crime, they say, is my business.
So it's nice to escape crime, in the enclave of your own home and family. Of course, we went to the folks house for Christmas, and although I've never had a bad Christmas, this one was so relaxing that it stands out.
A firefighter friend of mine, still dealing with the remains of the huge fire that terrorized and pretty much destroyed a quarter of our community this year, can't seem to relax, and I've been there. He was commenting that just sitting around was eating him up, about he was ready for the holidays to be over NOW.
I can't agree. We're having a great holiday, particularly this week, and I wish it would last a couple of more weeks up until MLK day.
I'm thankful for visitors like Helene and Zach who actually read my blather and comment. Helene probably doesn't live too far away and apparently engages in many of the same activities I do, like a little hog hunting. She posted recently that her granddaughter supplied their Thanksgiving and Christmas ham, and let me tell you, if you get the right size (smaller) hog, it is tastier than any ham or bacon you've ever had.
Hunting for food is a way of life for folks I know. We may not do it out of necessity and as regularly as my grandparents did in East Texas, but it's a good skill to have and frankly, I think it's embedded in our DNA. For me, same with fishing also, and I mean all kinds of fishing: rod and reel sport fishing, cane pole fishing, seining, trot line fishing, jug fishing and so on. I've never done any "hand grabbing" of catfish or any of that nonsense.
One resolution I have is to do more fishing camps this year. I have several friends with nice places on the Colorado, one of the few rivers (other than the Brazos) in Texas that have much water in them. I like getting some friends together, taking a few campers and some cooking gear and setting up a fishing camp for an extended weekend. Usually there's at least a jonboat along for the trotlining. Once the grills start grilling and the food starts cooking, it's a several day feast. This year, my friend Neal suggested we go hog hunting the weekend before the fishing camp and get a couple of hogs. The idea is to have one processed for grilling and then to have the other one frozen for later use in a Hawaiian Luau style cooking pit, just for the helluva it.
As Helene notes in her comment on the previous thread, it is being predicted by some pretty knowledgeable folks, particularly at Texas A&M, that our drought will likely continue despite our current rainy conditions and could continue not only for months but for as long as ten years. That's very scary to us in Texas. Some smaller communities are still on the brink of running out of water, and many have not recovered and are teetering on the brink of outage as I write this. Where I live is in good shape water wise but not to fer west of us they've still got water shortage issues.
Our current rain is not enough to recharge aquifers, lakes, streams and such. We basically need it to rain for the next year or so on a daily basis.
We're infested with hogs in Texas. There are many different species I refer to here collectively as hogs, but in the Central Texas/Hill Country areas where I live and roam, I know more than one landowner who has sustained major financial loss to crops and livestock from marauding hordes of wild hogs.
Coyotes are also quite a problem as well, and are much harder to eradicate. Several of my friends who raise goats or sheep or cattle have invested in night vision scopes, expensive ones, because that's about the only way you can get a coyote.
But as always, I digress. There's a lot to be thankful for in my world, and I thank you for reading my musings.