The night prior to the hike, I'd eaten with some friends. Talk of travel became a topic, and when my turn to spout what foreign lands interest me to the point that I'd sit and watch a public television special on them, or, travel to them, I came up dry. I tried and tried to come up with a land I might like to visit, but I came up with zip. My friends looked astonished; they must think I'm odd to not want to travel, I thought.
Cooled from my hike, still standing still, staring at the deer, it hit me. I love Vermont. Not only do I love Vermont, I love the very spot of Vermont I live. The dirt, rocks, grass, air, slush-the works. I'm in love with Vermont.
Would a man or women, in love with their spouse, travel to another being to find nothing much different and no better then what they have with the one they love? Some do. I wouldn't.
When the deer, still staring at me, decided I am absolutely hopeless, and possess no game what so ever, he moved to leave. But he didn't just leave. No. He made a point of the fact that he's a deer and I'm a dork.
He lifted his front legs evenly to just above his shoulders, and rocked back-just like Trigger when singing cowboy Roy Rogers would really get after it.
Then the deer twisted his body to the right, touched his front legs to the ground, and took off straight away from me, prancing along the hard packed crusher-run gravel road, hoofs click-clacking as he ran. He didn't prance in a straight line, instead he strode his head forward hard left, then right, then left again, and back to center, and when he figured I was about in a state of stupefied awe, he came to a complete stop. Calmly in place, facing away, his tail a snow white two foot strip of fluffy fur, he bounded up in to the air, four legs two feet off the road, and then softly landed, touching his front legs, keeping his rear and both back legs off the ground a few seconds longer.