Robin Hood-Ette

Close grouping? Not really
Robin Hood shot? Yep

So this prompt was kinda challenging to me, take a daily task and explain them in at least 10 steps. All the while pretending the audience is an alien, who may or may not have the faintest clue as to what the task is. I can’t over-explain to said alien in case he/she is very familiar with the task. Not explaining enough might alienate the individual… (pun totally intended) and as I keep all that in mind, I need to make it interesting too.

I let out a big gusty sigh as I reach my 25ft mark. The heat is ridiculous and the sun is glaring down on me as rude as ever. The clouds aren’t even on my side today, not a single wisp of one in sight. When you’ve been placed on this earth as someone with glow-in-the-dark skin, the sun is just not your friend. I tug my baseball cap down a bit further, listening to….well nothing. Not even cicadas are willing to let out their call, nor are the birds out singing gaily- it’s just still and hotter than a burning stump. It makes you want to run back inside for some cool relief.

At least there’s a plus side to the wind being nearly nonexistent. I won’t have to make any concessions on my judgment call to compensate for the wind. As I set my water bottle down I reach into the side pocket of my quiver for the bow stand. I lock it down on the bottom and set it down on the ground. I know I’m delaying, but the sun has turned on my sloth setting so I’m moving at the speed of molasses. I reach into my pocket for my arrow snot- no I’m not making that up, that’s what it’s called. If this lubricant isn’t used I have to put in way too much effort, and sometimes blisters, to get my arrows out of the target. The joys of using a compound bow over a traditional.

Once all five of my arrows have the right amount of “snot” on, I put them back in the quiver, pick my compound bow up and take off the stand. Just as I was about to notch my arrow, I feel something pat the back of my leg. Annabelle, my 80lbs majestic Great Pyrenees, plops her bum down and looks up at me with her tongue hanging way out to the side. Okay, maybe at this moment in time she doesn’t quite look that majestic. I forgot to give her the usual pat on the head before I start shooting- obviously that was a huge blunder in her eyes. I laugh a bit as I acknowledge her, she settles down behind me letting out her own gusty sigh.

I raise my bow up and notch my arrow once more. As I pull back and hit that resting point, I go through my mental checklist. By feel, I know my elbow is at the correct point, not up too high and not slouchy either. The kisser is lined up right at the side of my mouth and my first knuckle is hitting the edge of my jaw. I look through my peep and down to the sight. As I line up the bead with bulls eye, I take a deep breath and at the same time as I exhale I also let the arrow loose. It hits near the bullseye with a pleasing thwack sound. I go through about eight rounds of fives before I start to call it a day. I’m a bit annoyed, my groupings aren’t consistently in the center. One last round, this has to end on a better note. First three are bullseye, the fourth decided to do it’s own thing. By my fifth, I’m too annoyed so I don’t think too hard and just let it fly. Thwack crack “the sound of victory”, I cringe (it’s the sound of money going down the drain too) and then do a little dance. I pulled a “Robin Hood” shot again.

I’ve done about six of those in the five years that I’ve become an archer. Never are they on purpose though, one day it’ll be because I decided to. It’s amazing what a mental challenge archery can be. If you’re too into your own head, your shooting won’t be consistent. Which means you have to have perfect form everytime. For me, that tends to result in me being in my head too much. It always comes down to balance.

As I yank out my last arrow from the target, I look at my new trophy and shake my head as I smile. The session didn’t start out that great, but it ended better than expected. I pick my bow up and start walking back home with Annabelle trailing behind me- both of us probably dreaming of air conditioning.

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