There was no point. No quivering tail, lifted leg. Not a single fluttering nostril or bulging eyes.
I didn’t take a shot. Didn’t even have a shotgun. No anticipation and certainly not any expectation.
But the lone valley quail we encountered today was responsible for one of those moments. You know, one of the rare, fleeting moments amateur bird dog trainers hope for.
All the work, the drudgery and drills, mind-numbing practice sessions came together when Manny crashed into the tall sage from upwind. A hen bird whirred out of the bush, jetting right over Manny’s stationary head.
You read that right. Stationary, as in stopped to flush. Just like the books and videos, the very situation magazine writers brag about. The sound and sight of a flushing bird anchored Manny’s paws to the ground in our real world, just like everyone says it’s supposed to happen. If he wanted to, he could have opened his fuzzy, bearded muzzle and swallowed her whole. But he watched the feathered rocket sail off, calm and collected and waiting for his next command.
I’m hoping it will someday be such a common occurrence I’ll get blase’ about it. Until then, WOO-HOO!