Friday, May 22, 2009
Groundhogs In Trees - The Right End of the Woodchuck
Yesterday, I'm sitting in my room staring at the computer screen or something while my Mom and sister Mattea have gone out for a walk with our dog Bella. All of a sudden, I hear shouting, and something about woodchucks and trees and Bella. Mattea comes running up and says that as they were walking past my Grandpa's garden, Bella treed a woodchuck (hillbilly speak for ground hog). While the idea of one of the fairly big, burrowing animals in a tree seems against several laws of physics and nature, I grab a little single shot break action .22 (that actually belongs to Mattea, but it's my favorite small game gun) from my arsonal and run after Mattea in bare feet. We go through the yard and across the road and through some more grass, past my Grandpa's garden and there it is: about seven feet up the side of a tree, is a woodchuck, stretched out and hanging onto the bark with all four paws. After a moment of bemusment, I raise the gun to my shoulder. I can't really tell particularlly well which end of it is even the head, but I take my best guess, and after some objection from my Mom about it looking cute, I take aim, pull the trigger. There is a crack, and the woodchuck cartwheels through the air several times into the rasberry bramble at the foot of the tree. It lies absolutely motionless on the ground. I have difficulty climbing into the thicket on account of my bare feet, but finally manuver my way in without to much pain or blood loss. The woodchuck is still completely still, and I have trouble even telling where I hit him. I turn him over by the tail and a small trickly of red from his ear reveals that it was a headshot. So the poor thing probably never even heard the gun shot, let alone hitting the ground. So I picked the right end of the woodchuck.