The temperature variations through the holidays have ranged from 65 degrees down to 5. Some folks think that leads to colds, coughs and discomfort of all sorts. Not having had a real cold for three winters, I’ve sort of considered weather-related claims as being right up there with “the shaman says.” I feel that I have profited from early flu shots in mid-September over the last 20 years, during my semi-annual visit to Dr. Louis.
However, while visiting friends and family over the holidays, I got too close to a long-standing friend with a cold who said, “I don’t think I am still catching.” You know what? I caught it like Willie Mays robbing somebody of a hit in centerfield.
Mr. Lemon went visiting and he had a steady walking partner for six days who has a nice little 13-inch beagle lady. The boy said they seemed to enjoy each other’s company. Beagles like other beagles and are very happy with a whole truck full.
I read some books about beagling in England. It is the canine sport of rabbit hunting, with the humans on foot and whippers-in on either side of the pack to keep them focused. It is necessary to have at least 14 couples (that’s 28 dogs) and maybe a few spares. That’s what you need to make an adequate pack. You also have to have your man on a bicycle run them out 11 miles and back every other day to get them in good trim for a six-hour “go” on the weekend outing. You know how round Mr. Lemon’s trim is these days. Beagling is just a daydream for him.
I was up around the Altmar-Parish-Williamstown school area some years ago. I went out for lunch and there was a pickup with a full-length bed and cap and I saw a whole sea of motion through the windows of the cap. I peeked in and there were about 12 beagles inside. They really seemed to like to be all bunched up in the truck. The beagle-man said he just backed the truck up to the kennel door, opened the door, and they all jumped into the truck. They were on the way to a training run close by. The man said that he took them out two or three times every week to tune them up for Sunday’s snowshoe rabbit hunts.