Monday, February 28, 2011
Nov 1, 2010
Now-a-days obesity is a major issue in America. Americans just flat eat too much, and eat things that are just not good for them. It amazes me that we have gotten to a point where we have too much food. I think of a story that my Father told me. He said that a few doctors told him he should have been two inches taller. This was due to the fact he was malnourished as a child.
Once my Grandparent’s moved to a house that had lots of land they started growing their own food. They grew a lot of food staples, mainly potatoes, green beans, corn, cabbage, and tomatoes. During the winter months my Father and Grandfather would hunt for rabbits and squirrels. A lot of times this was their only source of meat.
My Dad said in his own words, “I wasn’t even allowed to look at a gun until I was sixteen.” I believe my Grandparents wanted to make sure he was mature enough to handle a firearm before he was allowed to hunt with one. In ....West Virginia.... they not only have the smaller gray squirrels like many of us are familiar with, they have the much larger fox squirrels. They are two to three times as big as a gray squirrel.
It was during my Father’s first year of hunting when he saw the biggest fox squirrel he had ever seen. It was massive, and hiding in the crook of a tree. He positioned himself around the tree to get a shot. He aimed carefully, and hit it. It then came crashing down like a cannonball. Elmer, a longtime family friend was hunting with my Dad and Grandfather. He came over to see what was going on. Him and Dad went up to see just how big this fox squirrel was.
They looked at it, and Elmer said, “It’s a groundhog. What’s it doing in a tree?” Dad replied, “I don’t know, I thought it was a fox squirrel. What should we do? That’s when Elmer said something that described the times they lived in. He said, “Well, it’s meat.” He then put it in his overcoat that had an inside pouch to hold small game.
They took it home to my Grandmother, and she skinned it and cleaned it. She then proceeded to stuff it and bake it like a turkey. And yes, they all ate it. It was food and it was meat. They had a day where they were able to eat meat. Due to the size of the groundhog they had a good amount of meat that night.
It brings me back to my original thought. These days people wouldn’t even think of eating a groundhog just so they would have something to eat. Yet it wasn’t that long ago that this happened. It kind of makes you thankful for one dollar cheeseburgers.