The Deer Hunter’s Experience of Time

My father and I climbed into a tower overlooking our farm tonight and sat waiting for deer to appear. And like any good hunters, we waited.

My father is probably the hardest-working person I know, and he’s trained me to work hard, too. But in times like these, we can’t do much but sit in (relative) silence.

You can take a nap (he does). You can count the things you’re grateful for (he does that, too). You can watch the grass swaying, wild geese flying overhead, or cars driving past. You can think about your life at length.

It’s about the closest thing to meditation you could expect from a country boy from South Carolina.

Lots of us have time to wait. There are still things that take time. But up there on a hunt is one of those really rare times in modern life in which you have to wait *without any guarantee* that your waiting will actually yield anything.

The deer hunt is a special act of faith. If you look at it a certain way, you have to be OK with losing a few hours and walking away with nothing.

We walked away without a deer, but we didn’t walk away with nothing. We had nature. We had challenge. We had beauty. We had patience. We had the stillness that comes with time on a hunt.

 

James Walpole

James Walpole is a writer, startup marketer, and perpetual apprentice. You're reading his blog right now, and he really appreciates it. Don't let it go to his head, though.

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