SD04132 Jimmy K

A true reflection of his environment, he is a rugged man of the earth, with a million dollar smile.  Jimmy K could charm a rattlesnake with his bashful grin and boyish looks.  His leather tanned skin makes it hard to tell if he is forty, fifty, sixty or a hundred.  But that smile, when he turns that smile on, age becomes completely irrelevant.

He grew up out here in this desolate place.  Hasn’t ever strayed very far.  Steady, sturdy, and stealth, few can keep up with Jimmy K in the field, or would even try.  As luck would have it, I am one of those few who does try. 

Let me just say, a day on the plains with Jimmy K makes boot camp look like romper room.  He knows the area like the back of his hand.  He knows where every bush, brook and boulder is.  He knows where every bird is roosted, deer is bedded, and creature is burrowed.  With a quick glance up he knows exactly what time it is.  He knows if that ominous dark sky will reach us, and by when.

When we go out exploring his “back yard” it’s not all fun and games.  After all, he wears many caps, and doesn’t always have a lot of free time.  He may be up  hours before dawn, and not come home from his many obligations until almost midnight, so when he gets to go out and “play”, be ready!  His sure footed, quick step pace up and down the hills cannot even be slowed with a 60lb pack of gear.  Hard as I try to stay at his side, often I fall behind, gasping for air, questioning my capability since I try so hard to take care of myself and work out regularly, eat healthy, get proper rest……SDTurkey2013 085

 

Finally he will stop and light up a smoke while I catch up.  How ironic. 

 

Somehow, he seems to find the tallest peaks to climb just to get to the other side of the hill.  Somehow, though it seems there couldn’t possibly be another sign of life out on the plains, he will come up on game galore just around the next draw, nine out of ten times. 

Jimmy K is a quiet, reserved man.  He always has plenty to do.  He has a heart of gold.  If he is not out chasing critters in the vast wild of the Great Plains, he volunteers much of his time to the Moose Club, and runs the local chapter and caters events for most of the towns in the area.  He accepts challenges and responsibility well beyond normal expectations.  I often wonder how he gets it all done.  Plus he puts up with me, borrows me his gun and gear, shares his best hunting spots with me, listens to my hair brain ideas, and is always there when it counts.  That says a lot, too. 

What a blessing to be able to call Jimmy K a friend of mine.

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