Thursday, January 11, 2007

For several years after my father in law took the hunting rights back from what is now my sister in law’s place in Tiny Town County, I bravely packed up and went with G when he went hunting. Having been a biology major with knowledge of anatomy, I would go out and help him "dress" the deer. That means I would help skin and dismember said deer. I don't remember that being in our wedding vows, however!

I continued doing this even after the children were born which made for some tricky times. I would be running between the house and the rack at the hunter’s cabin. There’s not much telling what went on with those kids while I was outside, but nothing was broken (thank goodness since it was mother in law’s house), and neither child was maimed.

After a few years, I finally got smart and decided to stay home when he would make these forays into the "wilderness." It was terribly boring for me. There was no satellite television at that time, and the tall antenna would only bring in one station. It was supposed to be able to turn to bring in all sorts of stations, but we were afraid to try to turn it. Unvariably, if a turn was attempted, the thing would break, and that would mean NO television at all.

It was boring to sit in the house, without car, nothing to entertain (especially the kids), from about 3 pm to around 6:30. Then it was not fun to go out to "dress the deer" especially when it was cold and I was in tennis shoes. Frost bitten toes were in order.

But now we have our own place, with satellite. I no longer go out to help with whatever deer was taken. Usually the only thing I have to do with the venison is to cook it at some later date. That was true until this year.

I bought one of those really neat vacuum food sealers to keep at SSB. The first deer G shot this year, I bagged the pieces while we were still there. Well, that’s not too bad. I made one mistake. I worked with the venison other than making it into some heavenly dish.

This second deer that was shot on the last day of the season was supposed to have been bagged while we were there. I was too busy cleaning the house which was filthy. Things like that happen when you have eight people living there for four days, a party of fourteen on New Year’s Eve, and then another person coming for two days after the mob left. The deer was put into the freezer.

What I did not know was that blasted deer was only quartered. It was still on the bones! And now it was frozen solid. And I was to package it. Did you know that you cannot cut frozen meat?
I left the ice chest outside on Monday night. Even here in Swampland, it can be chilly at night. The meat was solidly frozen. It was going to be fine. Yesterday I opened the chest. It was at this time I found it was only quartered. It was still as solid as a rock. G had really expected me to process it yesterday. I told him there was no way.

I decided I would bring in the ice chest today and open it to let the meat thaw while I was at the dentist having my teeth cleaned. I did just that. When I got home, I retrieved the rump only to find it was still frozen - solid. I let it all sit until 4 this afternoon. It was still pretty solid, especially on the bottom.

After fighting it for an hour and a half, the score stands at:
1 venison rump - 99% removed from the bone
5 fingers - frostbite
3 fingers - frozen
remaining rump and shoulders - in the outside refrigerator to defrost.

No comments: