Bad Opening Morning to My Duck Hunting Season...

Steve Johnson

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The hunting day started off like any other, with a lot of excitement and optimism of the day ahead. This morning was a special Duck Hunting trip to Maryland's Eastern shore that began about 3 O’clock in the morning. It was a two-hour drive to our spot and we were meeting a couple other people at 5am. My partner showed up right on time, and we pulled out of the driveway at exactly 3am.

Shortly after our hunting adventure began we saw the unmistakable blue flashing lights in the rear-view mirror. The officer claimed we had a tag light out, but upon further inspection and running my license and tags figured out that everything was good, and we were on our way again. The gas light was on in the truck and the miles till empty was reading 37 and of course the gas station I usually stop at was closed at 3am. I continued on my way, thinking I would run into a station that was open and also sold diesel fuel. Little did I know how bad this morning was getting ready to be. After passing 3 big name gas stations, which did not carry diesel, we found ourselves sitting on the shoulder of the road at 3:30 in the morning with no fuel. What a morning this was becoming. Finally after a few minutes we were somehow able to not only wake someone up, but also talk him into bringing us fuel. After a short wait, our fuel showed up and we were on the road to duck hunting once again. We stopped and fueled up and began trying to make up for lost time.
Lucky for us (probably the only luck we would see today) it didn't take nearly as long to get to our hunting destination as we had thought, and we ended up there about 20 minutes late with plenty of time to get setup before shooting light. So after all the road-blocks of the morning, we figured it could only get better from here, after all we were sitting in a duck blind with friends, watching the sun come up. What could be better??
Daybreak started off like most duck hunting mornings with lots of ducks flying and shot-gun blasts in the distance. However on this particular morning, the ducks didn't seem to like our setup too well. They would give us a look or two and then head off to the next destination. We ended up getting one chance at one bird, which I botched and missed twice. So after all the hard work and determination to get into the duck blind on opening morning, we came home empty handed.
However, it didn't end there. About mid-way through the morning I felt some pain in my upper thigh, I didn't think much of it, thought maybe my keys were poking my leg or something. After we got back to the truck and I took off my waders, I took a look at my leg to find what looked like a pimple with a one inch red circle around it. I still didn't think too much of it, we hopped in the truck and headed home. Upon arriving at the house, I got the chills. I thought it was from the chilly morning on the water, and went up and climbed into bed to catch a nap. After laying down for a while my leg began to really hurt bad, a lot worse then a pimple. I complained to my wife that I was FREEZING and my leg hurt really bad. She felt my forehead and thought it was necessary to take my temperature, which turned out to be 101. We then took a look at my leg and the redness had grown to about the size of your hand, around what still looked like a pimple.
To make this short, on top of all the problems we had, I believe I was bit by some kind of spider that happen to be living in my waders for the summer months. I went to the Doctors and had it checked out and have to take antibiotics for the next 10 days and keep an eye on it. I still say a bad day hunting, is better then a good day at work, but I think this may be pushing it…

Posted by Steve Johnson under Field Journals on October 16, 06 05:00 PM | Permalink

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