Dream of: 20 February 1996 "Beaver"

I was standing on the side of a large weedy field which had a creek running along the right side. I had been watching something about 20 meters from me out in the field. I could tell that something was moving across the field from left to right, and although I couldn't see the object because of the weeds, I had concluded that it was a young beaver which was pulling something, perhaps another dead animal across the field.

Realizing that the animal was getting closer to the creek, and that if it made it to the creek it would escape into the water, I finally decided to walk out, intercept it and see what it was. Trudging out into the field, I soon spotted the animal and I stopped in my tracks about five meters from it, surprised by what I saw.

I had expected to see a young beaver which would quickly run off, like most beavers, as soon as it saw me. Instead I saw an old beaver facing me, its feet firmly planted, obviously with no intention of moving from its prize which was lying next to it. I could clearly see the gray hairs and whiskers on the beaver's face, mixed in with the rest of it brown coat. Its mouth was open revealing its large teeth, which I knew had to be extremely sharp.

I hesitated. I thought if I rushed upon the beaver it would run. What if it didn't? If it attacked me, it could definitely do some damage. I remembered something: back on the edge of the field where I had been standing, I had left several guns, including a couple handguns. I could clearly see those guns in my mind. I could run back, retrieve one and quickly return. Then I would show that beaver.

I turned and headed back to the side of the field, debating which gun I would use. I thought I also had some shotgun shells and that one of the handguns used shotgun shells. I might try that. But then I decided I would rather just used a .38 caliber handgun. It might be more difficult to hit the beaver with a single bullet than with a shotgun blast, but if I did hit it, I would blow the beaver away.

I had another reason for wanting to kill the beaver: I had heard about some researchers who were studying beaver hearts and were anxious to obtain some. If I killed the beaver, I could take the heart to the researchers.

When I reached the edge of the field where the guns were, I found Carolina and my neighbor from across the street, Roy McClure, standing there. Roy is a tall, gaunt man (about 50 years old) who works as a plumber. I had even once used his services to put in my kitchen sink. But now when I thought about him, I thought I had also heard that he knew how to tan skins. I thought if I killed the beaver, he might be able to tan it for me. I asked him if he could do it and he said he could. I then asked him how much he would charge and he said he could do it for $100.

As soon as he told me that, my mental demeanor changed dramatically. I had specifically asked Roy how much he would charge, because I thought he had overcharged me when he had installed my kitchen sink. When I had hired him to install the sink, we hadn't discussed the cost, and he had ended up charging me over $500, an amount which I had paid but which I had felt was outrageous.

Now I realized he was again trying to overcharge me. It should not cost $100 to get a skin tanned. I should be able to get it done for about $30.

But now the more I thought about getting the beaver skin tanned, I asked myself what I was doing. This wasn't like me to kill a beaver. I had always felt protective toward beavers. Why would I go out in the field and blow away this old beaver who had somehow managed to live to such an old age? Even if it meant getting the beaver heart for some researchers, the whole plan was ridiculous. I was just glad I had come to my senses before doing something I would later regret.

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