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Bob and Sam were boyhood buddies and had hunted together since they were kids. They grew apart as life progressed with the exception of hunting together every year. Bob was a successful business man. Sam, on the other hand, was the village scally wag. He earned a living doing manual labor, skipping from job to job, and living life as it came, cold beer, wild women and fast Harleys were a big part of his world.
The boys had drawn some December late season elk tags and travelled up to Bob's cabin for a week of hunting. They had no power up there and a small spring provided water. They were too far up in God's country for cell phone service, and Sam had forgotten the radio batteries for the third year in a row.
On the last day of hunting two things happened. Sam hit a nice bull about 4 inches too far back which resulted in a track and trail recovery about a mile from the cabin and a surprise snowstorm rolled in from the west. It took until dark to get the bull quartered and packed back to the cabin, get the clothes packed, and high tail it for home.
They drove in increasingly heavy snow for about 3 hours out of the hill country and onto the ranchlands below. Although the roads were less treacherous the blowing snow became a real problem. About 9:00 PM they hit a big drift and hung the truck up with the wheels about 4" off the road and hard packed snow underneath. Digging out was not an option.
As they were huddled in the cab considering their dilemna and possible solutions the snow seemed to lighten up a bit. Through the wind gusts they could see a ranch yard light about a half mile up the road. They decided this might be a place that might know where they could call a tow truck or perhaps the rancher might even offer to pull them out. So, up the road they went.
When they got to the ranch house they could see the flicker of the TV so they felt that at least they wouldn't wake the family up. They knocked on the door and a young woman came to the door. She opened it just a crack and they could see that she was clad in slippers and a bathrobe. Standing on the porch they explained their predicament and asked if her husband was around. She hesitated for a moment and said that she was recently widowed and lived alone. She said that her husband had been a hunter and because hunters were generally good people that they could come in and at least warm up a bit.
The weatherman was on TV saying that all snowplows had been taken off the road until daylight and that travel was dangerous. At that point it was apparent to all that Sam and Bob were stranded. The young woman told the that they might as well stay the night. There was only one bedroom in the house and that was hers. So Bob and Sam drew straws for the couch or the recliner and settled in for the night.
About 6 AM they heard the snow plow coming up the road and ran out to warn the driver of their truck stuck in the drift. Bob climbed in with the plow driver who offered to pull the truck out as he went up the road. The cab was too small for 3 guys so Sam waited for his return. When Bob got back they thanked their young host, gave her some fresh elk tenderloin as a thank you gift, and headed back home.
One Saturday morning in September Bob called Sam and asked if they could meet for breakfast. Sam had other plans, but he could feel some urgency in Bobs voice and agreed to meet him. After they ate the were sitting at the table having coffee and Bob brought up the hunting trip.
"Sam", he said, "do you remember us staying at that ranch house about 9 months ago on our way home from the elk hunt"?
Sam allowed as he did remember that. And Bob noticed a wistful look in Sam's eye.
Bob cleared his throat a bit. "Now Sam, when I went with the snow plow driver to get the truck and was gone for about 45 minutes, did you happen to sneak up to that young woman's bedroom"?
The sheepish look on Sam's face was all the proof Bob needed to confirm that he had.
Bob cleared his throat a bit again. "Now Sam. Did you happen to use my name when talking to that young lady? Specifically, did you tell her you were me"?
Sam nodded slowly and, in a rare fit of honesty, said, "I even gave her one of your business cards that I had in my wallet."
Bob said, "Well Sam, I got a letter from her attorney yesterday and the news wasn't very good."
By now Sam was sitting there with a rather shocked look on his face.
Bob said, "She was killed in a car accident last week and in her will she left me the house and a quarter section of land!!!!"
____________________ “Those that beat their rifles into plow shares will plow for those who didn’t”. Jefferson
Light hunting rifles; Gravity is permanent, recoil is temporary.Your Choice