There are two employees who work here whom I have never met, but would certainly like to do so. Their names are ” I don’t Know” and “Not me”. Whenever a piece of equipment goes missing or is damaged , I always ask who did this, and it’s always one of those two guys mentioned above. I’ve never seen their names on a pay check, but they must be very active Riverview employees.
I’m often asked when I’m gong to write my memoirs of my career at Riverview, and my answer is always the same, ” The statute of limitations has not run on all of the perpetrators yet”. However, I have decided to share two stories this morning, one involving a guide and one involving guests.
I was sitting at my desk many years ago when a guide called me and asked if I could come pick up a dog of his. Before I continue with this story, please know that our guides go through an extensive training program before they are ever allowed to take paying guests out. This training program includes one month of class work, one month of field work, a two week apprenticeship riding with an experienced guide, and then he must pass a trial hunt. The trial hunt is always the owners or managers pretending to be paying guests, and we try to do everything wrong that we can do to see if our young man is ready. So now back to the story. I drove out to the course to pick up the dog, and the guide met me with his dog way back from the guests. The exchange went like this; ” What’s wrong with the dog”, I said. To which he responded, ” There is nothing wrong with the dog. I’m lost. I’ve ridden around this field three times, and can’t find my way into my course, and the guests are getting suspicious”. I pointed out a small trail leading down a steep hill, and told him that he would find the Cabbage Patch hunting course opening up on him when he got to the bottom of the hill.
He let out a big sigh, and started back to the jeep with the dog, and I had to say,” Whoa, Bubba, you told the guests that dog was sick; so I need to take him back with me”. ” But, that’s one of my best dogs”, he responded. I told him that he should have chosen a second stringer to drag with him, but that I had to have the dog. At any rate, he found his course, had a great hunt, the guests were happy, and never smelled a rat.
The next story involves two gentlemen who had never seen a shotgun or a quail. Their company sent them down here to check us out. Why you would send two non-hunters to check out a hunting operation, I will never figure out. But, there are a lot of things that large companies do that make very little sense to me. We showed them our safety video, taught them how to shoot, and put them with our most experienced guide who had been forewarned that they didn’t know a thing about quail hunting. Just before they climbed on the jeep, I added an admonition that I have rarely ever uttered to any guests. I very sternly said, ” You listen carefully to the guide, do everything he says, and do everything he does”.
Well, they returned three hours later. They had shot six boxes of shells, and had killed five birds. They were thrilled, but I could tell that my guide was about to bust wide open to share something. When they went back to their cottage, Wayne said, “Boss, they can’t shoot a lick, but they sure can follow directions”. I asked him to expound on that a bit. He told me that when he flushed the first covey of quail, he squatted to the ground to make himself a smaller target, and waited for the shots that never came. When he glanced to his left and right, both guys had hunkered down on the ground just like he was doing. I guess that ” do what he does” might have been misconstrued a bit.
That’s all for now, folks!