The Moose Lottery

I got a letter from my brother the other day.  Apparently, he’s sequestered in his basement during this “unprecedented time.”  When he takes a break from his guitar, he writes a letter.  It’s been fun catching up with each other through letters.  I love letters and in spite of Crona (or Krona if you’re German), the mail continues to move along swiftly and safely.  The post office in Lisbon Falls is still open, too; prior to these letters from my brother, there was little need to walk there.  Now I have a reason to go, even though Main Street is a ghost town and no one is hanging out at The Rusty Lantern.

In an April 12, 2020 letter, my brother Jim Baumer wrote “I sense when I read your posts that there’s much more you’d like to say if there was a reason and audience to write for.”



There is a lot more I’d like to say, mostly about the cognitive dissonance of the Crona narrative.  Think about it.  How can we be “alone together?”

Then there is “stay home, save lives.”  I guess that means when I drive alone to my family’s property four miles away (for my walk with nobody) I’m a natural born killer.

Do you see what I mean?  There is so much more I could say about this strange cognitive dissonance.

Speaking of killing, I entered the Maine moose permit lottery this week.  There will be 3,135 permits given out; 2,350 of those are for bull moose.  I did not enter the cow tag lottery.  No one really wants a cow tag.

One day while walking alone out and around Baumer’s Field, I found a big bone near a stream.  When I got home, I showed it to several hunters and they all agreed it was a moose leg bone.  It’s in a peroxide bath right now, whitening.  Although there are no moose permits given out for wildlife management district 22, the location of our property, it’s exciting to think one of those giant lumbering creatures was lurking around near my grandfather’s land.  I wonder what Pa would think?


Last night, as I was circling the field and cresting the hill near the powerline, I stopped in my tracks.  Five deer were grazing in the area where Pa used to plant potatoes.  They didn’t smell me right away, so I stood perfectly still, watching them.  There were two doe and three younger deer.  Not fawns, though.  Perhaps “pre-teens.”  Rats!  I didn’t have binoculars!

Then, all of a sudden, a small head popped up from the over the hill, about 30 yards from me.  Deer are incredibly curious animals.  A woman hunter I know once told me “I’ve seen more deer when I’ve pee’d near the stand…and believe it or not, by lighting a cigarette.”

I didn’t have a cigarette and the pre-teen turned and ran back to the other five deer nervously.  Then one flagged and they all flagged and ran off in a line into the woods.

It was a beautiful thing.

Someone once asked my father if his father (my grandfather) ever wanted to return to the “Old Country” of Bavaria.  My father said his father was unhappy here in America until he bought some land.  Then he was happy.

I am grateful for the legacy of land Michael Leo Baumer left.  It’s a good place to be alone.

All alone and not together.


I don’t have anything more to say about Crona, even though there are many more things I’d like to say.  Cognitive dissonance…it’s what’s for breakfast.

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