Thursday, August 23, 2007

A guy's weekend

Last weekend was great down at Neil's farm. My buddy bought this place four years ago to use as a nursery for his landscaping business. It also makes an excellent place to get away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. The farm is less than a couple of hours away, so it's pretty convenient to get to. We took off Thursday evening looking to meet up with our buddy Stephen who was driving up from Bradenton, Florida. We try to get together with Stephen whenever possible and this was our chance this year. As luck would have it, Stephen was pulling through Ellaville at the same time we were. We proceeded to the farm and got unloaded and settled in before grabbing some stuff and heading to Neil's uncle's place a mile up the road. Me and Stephen were on the four wheeler and Andrew and Neil were riding in the Gator. Spent an hour or so cruising around the property, hunting for Armadillos and just generally checking things out. Neil's uncle has some 300 acres so there's a lot of room to just roam about.

Got back to the house and just hung for a bit, drinking a few beers and just shooting the shit. Good to be around a bunch of great guys. Got up Friday morning a *little* hung over but not too bad (nothing like the previous weekend!!). Uncle Bobby headed up from Americus early so we could all have a good breakfast before getting to work. Friday was spent running back and forth to Ellaville for groceries and supplies; I think we made something like 5 trips to town that day because we kept forgetting the little things we needed! We got a couple of gallons of paint so we could finish painting the pump house that we had started on last year, hinges and door latches to fix the screen door on the porch and the door on the pump house, and a lot of other little piddly stuff that just needed to get done. We worked our asses off in some of the most intense heat of the summer. We always were having fun though! Ended up the day running down to Americus so that we could use Uncle Bobby's welder and drill to mount the skeet thrower to a 2" receiver so that it could be mounted on the back of a pickup truck. This was just a great idea that worked out perfectly! The thrower worked pretty well as it was, but couldn't really be anchored to the ground very well. Mounting it on some 2" box steel took care of that problem!! Anyway, after using the welder we agreed to help Uncle Bobby move some furniture into his daughter's new home. What should have taken about 15 minutes to move a couch and a couple of armoires ended up taking over an hour!!! Dammit, but none of us were even married to the woman and we kept moving stuff around, waiting for approval that this looked good here, there, wherever. Damn!

Rain started to fall as we were pulling in to Neil's driveway coming back from Americus.
Figured it was just a little summer shower that would pass pretty quickly. Damn if it didn't just come down cats and dogs for over four hours! I think it rained close to six inches during that time. Lightning and thunder to beat the band! We lost power an hour or so into the storm but wasn't really any big deal... Just lit candles, cranked up the grill and got to cooking a bunch of fish that Andrew had caught the previous weekend in Destin. That and some Asparagus made for a damn good dinner, all grilled just perfectly. Man we ate like kings! Of course, when you get the four of us fat asses together, we're going to eat well! Didn't really do too much more except sit around and shoot the shit for a while Friday night. Neil did keep trying to get the EMC to come out and fix the power, but that didn't end up happening until seven the next morning.

We were up early Saturday again and Uncle Bobby came up to join us for breakfast. Luckily the EMC came out early and got the power turned back on so we could have some coffee and get awake. After breakfast and a quick shower, we headed up to Uncle Bobby's place to clear a road going into the south "40" (more like the south 100). We worked until early afternoon cutting down little trees, trimming high branches and bush hogging the road to get it passable. Amazing how much five guys can get done. Damn it was hot again, and muggy as hell thanks to the rain the previous night. We went back to Neil's for lunch with the full intention of getting back to work after lunch. As fate would have it, no one was really inclined to get back out in the heat after enjoying a great lunch, instead opting for a nap. I caught about 20 minutes and woke up ready to get back to work. Neil was just getting around to changing out the bush hog for the finishing mower, so I went down to help him and ended up doing the mowing while he did some other stuff around the house. First time bush hogging and didn't do too bad of a job! Only hit one of his tree cages and mangled it pretty bad, but nothing that couldn't be fixed!

By the time I was done, Bobby had headed back to Americus and the other three had set up to shoot some skeet. Andrew, Neil and Stephen all got a turn at a stack when I finished mowing so it was perfect timing for me to get some shots in. Damn, I love to shoot skeet! It's been a while since I've had the opportunity, but it's like riding a bike for me. First I was using Neil's auto loader and knocked out 15 for 15. Woohooo! It was a good day. I think I got a couple more turns and really only missed a couple total, not including the double that Stephen threw when I only had one shot left in his pump. Stephen liberated a watermelon from the patch behind Neil's and since I had my pistol, we laid waste to that poor fruit. There wasn't much left of it by the time we finished with it. Ended up shooting until almost dark. Dinner on Saturday was awesome again. Stephen had done a really nice venison roast, black beans and rice and asparagus again. Man, what a meal! After we finished we were all too full and too tired to do anything else, so we sat around and watched Beerfest and just crashed.

Sunday morning was pretty uneventful. We did some more little jobs around Neil's until it was time to clean up and get ready to leave. I guess Stephen took off around 11 so he could get back down to Florida. It was good as always to see him, just too short of a time. We got everything at the farm back in order and cleaned up for an hour or so before loading up and heading home.

These three guys are the best friends a guy can have. We always have a good time when we're together. It's amazing to think that we've known each other for over 25 years and we all still keep in touch and see each other every chance we get. There will be plenty more opportunities to get together for years to come and I really look forward to it!

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1 comment:

Raven said...

I LOVE weekend like that!! Well, skip the working part, but hanging out with old friends. I did so this past July, my friend Kathy has a farm in Duluth, and I stayed with her while we had the ASFA trial. At night we sat out and looked at the stars, and it was so quiet, it hurt my ears. She has over 30 acres...I am planning to go up again this fall. It really DOES help to escape the every day routine, the older we get, the harder that is to do though!:)