Scattered Thoughts: Stargazing

When they think of stargazing, most people imagine a quiet, relaxing time under the night sky, the soft chirps of crickets filling the evening air. Not me. At least not on this night. It’s 2 a.m., and I’m standing in the middle of a pasture deep in southern Mississippi looking straight up into the night sky. Ten minutes earlier, I had made a great shot on a bobcat at over 200 yards.

Scattered Thoughts: Stargazing

My host, Simon, and I had walked out to find it amongst the tall grass — our companion, Blake, staying back with the rifles and our other gear. Simon had a flashlight and he scanned back and forth amongst the clumps of grass and bushes looking for my cat.  

Suddenly, a pickup truck appeared over by Blake, and I heard a loud and volatile voice bellow from across the field. “Who the H&!!? is on my property?!”  

Simon turns to me in the darkness and says, “Spike, I’ll be right back,” and he disappears — taking his flashlight with him.  

So, there I am, on some very angry stranger’s property 800 miles south of home with no light source and no weapon. All I have, in case this situation turns Western, is the North Star to guide me home. That is the North Star, right?  

Ten agonizing minutes go by while I strain my neck in the darkness to hear how the conversation is going. Finally, the truck drives off and out of nowhere Simon reappears.  

“Landowner didn’t recognize my truck,” he explained.  

A few minutes later, we find the bobcat. And as I hoist the beautiful creature up for a picture, I think to myself,” Thank God for my Southern hosts and for the North Star!”  

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