Bowden and I are crack shots. Watch out ground squirrels!!!
Then we embarked on an hour long hunting trip into the creek bottoms. Our quarry was the elusive ground squirrels that live there. I took a few shots but failed to bag one. They're quick little devils.
Lucy, Bowden and I built this bridge across the stream a year ago. Bowden calls it thorny bridge because of the stinging nettles and wild roses which grow in great profusion there during the summer. Inspired by the Little House series Bowden and I ranged up and down the stream looking for a good spot for our homestead. Eventually we settled on a flat piece of ground near the bridge which Bowden declared a "good spot." We will return on another lazy day to erect some sort of claim shanty.
We climbed the other side of the gully and rested on a rock before continuing on our hunt. We saw deer and coyote tracks on a game trail which runs along the rim of the gully. We pretended that we were tracking a deer whose heavy tracks were well defined in the soft sand. Bowden kept loudly speculating on how surprised Mommy would be if we brought back a deer for dinner. I don't know if he thought that was actually a possibility or if he was just lost in make believe, but I just ran with it. Why impose reality on a moment like that? Rest easy all of you anxious Mothers- the safety was on and Bowden isn't yet strong enough to work the spring-loaded lever. But when I take the safety off and work the lever for him he's actually not a bad shot. I was impressed. I reached back into the shadowy memory of my days at the Police Academy and tried to impart what I remember of gun safety to him. I think our conversation about gun safety, using the official sounding parlance I recalled from my police days, made Bowden feel very grown up and responsible. He handled the BB gun as though he were carrying a loaded bazooka, and was visibly careful to heed all of my advice.