I felt in me a sensation of something different and extraordinary; perhaps an event that would have marked my life, forever. It was the third Sunday in December, the penultimate of my first Piedmontese hunting season. I opened my eyes, in that room, I saw the flakes fall along the glow of the street lamp. It was just four in the morning and the darkness outside was alternated by those few rays of light that barely illuminated the room. I went down slowly, on tiptoe, my family was still resting. I went to the bathroom to get ready, and then to the room where my rifle gun resides to take my Franchi AL48 cal. 12. "You will not take any guns!" "No gun will ever come here to my house !!" I repeated in my mind the phrases said by my mother (anti-hunting). I smiled, because this passion goes beyond everything, I owe a lot to her for giving me the opportunity to grow and mature. I closed the scabbard, closed the wooden door and left.
It was cold, the air was fresh, the sky was still illuminated by the glow of the moon and the stars, I felt my world, in its purity, in its silence. I warmed up the car for a few minutes and then left. Thoughts overlapped along the way that not even the music could exceed their volume. I had almost arrived at the Montezemolo bar. A Piedmontese town, located on the Piedmont-Ligurian border. The landscape is characterized by a hilly area, the panoramic view of the Alps with the view of its highest peaks (Bisalta and Monviso) in the clearest days.
The vegetation can be considered the classic of the phyto-climatic belt of Castanetum (chestnut, ash, maple, alder, poplar, hornbeam, wild cherry, walnut, hazelnut, oak and downy oak), even if considered one of the different Alpine areas of the province of Wedge. Here it is also possible to hunt in the snow (activity prohibited in ATC areas). In this country, in the same bar we met every morning, every Sunday and Wednesday to be able to start the day together with a nice good morning.
My smile increased in direct proportion to the decrease of the kilometers until I arrived to greet the dogs, crossing their eyes giving them caresses and lots of kisses. Soraia, Tango and Sciaima, the three ariegeois of my teammate: Luca Penna. I took a Moroccan with Nutella, a white chocolate croissant and go. Deciding where to go, we took the cars and left. The sun was advancing slowly and its rays illuminated the ice making it shine like diamonds. He watched over the silence as I watched the clearing sky. We walked our steps along the path while the others settled in their posts.
It was immediately a magnificent day: great prey right from the start. They shouted happiness "Bravo!" On the radio. “The dogs on the boar, I stop them ". “They did a great job”, “Great”, “Got it!”. The tenacity of the dogs increased and in us the determination increased in a single shared gaze. I saw in them the desire to run, to hunt in their perfect nature as predators. It was late in the morning, I found myself with my heart in my throat, the tremor and the shiver running down my spine. His howl was getting louder and his gaze was fierce but full of understanding as he looked at us to await our last command. The place was dirty, thick with vegetation, and the smell was becoming more and more savage. I heard his shot just above me and his echo; I immediately grabbed the rifle, held my breath thinking of nothing but the black beast to pull the trigger. The agitation became more exhausting. At that moment I felt only the heartbeat dominating over a background of howls and low voices on the radios.
I raised the gun, with care, the fear of not taking it, the agitation of not knowing how to aim, of making the same mistakes of the wrong wild boars in the previous days. I closed one eye and I immediately saw a black silhouette pass me in front of the red viewfinder, it was beautiful, its mane was high and I could hear its labored breathing from the wounds and the rush that was waiting for him, but it was too late.
"I haven't even touched it." "I didn't get it" (not to mention all the bad words) I yelled. But yes, I saw some parts of the entrails suspended on a branch. I had touched him yes, but it was not enough to make him go down completely. He had run away, but he couldn't run for long. His death was near and the dogs were to be rewarded for their work. We followed the traces of blood with the dog until we reached her second stop.
It was not easy to see the spots, they could see them on the ground, among the fallen leaves of autumn and the snow of winter. They were small but I also helped the search with the footprints on the broken snow. Then I followed the progress, the steps of Soraia, I heard his words through the gestures. Luca shouted at me, he was there, looking at us. I didn't have time to shoot because for my safety mania I had blocked my rifle at the wrong time. I saw the beast in the middle of the leaves run like a flash towards me, loading itself on my legs making me fall backwards. I felt my legs shaking, asking for forgiveness while Luca screamed at me his anger for the mistake made on a wounded boar. I got up, with more determination than ever. His end was near, it had to be. I ran to the frozen stream, my energy nearly exhausted from my period and the drop in blood pressure (damn!). They were beautiful as hell. They were a painting in my fondest memories.
Soraia's screams were a melody for me, impossible to forget. And when I saw the boar, approaching me looking in the eyes, begging me for its end. Our eyes met for the last time behind the red sight of my beloved Franchi, then I pulled the trigger. One shot, and then, the second. He threw himself on the ground, not moving anymore. She was thanked and recognized for her beautiful feat. “I got it!”, “I did it”. My teammates were really happy to have given me the opportunity to experience these emotions of ours and above all Luca for taking my risk for my young and poor experience on a passion that can become dangerous, lethal, with a single blow.
The hugs, the kisses, the laughter, the screams on the radios, the baptism and our glasses raised at the hunting lodge… They are indelible memories, inexplicable if not from living them with all of yourself. So is hunting, a passion full of emotions, a lifestyle full of events to enjoy. So is hunting: a love story between me and the dogs shared with the people of the favorite team.
COMPETITION LITERARY CATEGORY - "Passion Hunt Goal"
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