Bowhunting – The Way that Taylor Drury’s Dad, Mark Drury, and Boyfriend Got to Know Each Other
Editor’s Note: Taylor Drury is the 16 year old daughter of Mark Drury of Drury Outdoors and the creator of M.A.D. Calls. Taylor can’t remember when she first started shooting a bow, but the family likes to joke that she was born with a bow in her hand. Taylor explains that, “I really like watching animals and enjoy shooting my bow and taking deer. Most of all, I enjoy the quality time I spend with my dad in the outdoors when we scout, put out cameras, plant green fields, and hunt together.” This week, we’ll learn more about Taylor, what hunting means to her, and why hunting is such a strong thread that’s woven through the fabric of the Drury family.
Taylor Drury: I have one problem that I think other teenage girls probably have, and that is how to get a dad and a boyfriend to get along. My boyfriend Zac isn’t a hunter, and as everyone knows, my dad certainly is a hunter. My boyfriend doesn’t shoot a bow or a gun, and my dad does both. You can see how I would be worried about whether these two were going to get along or not. I wasn’t sure, but hoped that the fact that they were so different wasn’t going to be a major problem.
I took Zac up to the farm for the first time, so he could experience hunting, which of course is a major part of my life and my family’s life. At the time, I didn’t know it, but my dad wanted to get me on film taking a deer. My dad asked his cameraman, Joe, to film me, and then asked my boyfriend, Zac, if he’d be willing to go with him on a hunt. My dad wanted Zac to film him if he came across an opportunity to take a deer. This meant that my dad and my boyfriend, who didn’t really know each other, would be spending quite a few hours together in a tree. What was worse was that I wouldn’t be there to act as a buffer between them, and that was a scary thought. Before the hunt, my dad took Zac out in the woods, showed him how to run the camera, gave him an opportunity to practice running the camera and attempted to prepare him for what an afternoon in the tree stand would be like. I found out later that after spending two afternoons in the tree stand filming my dad, Zac really enjoyed seeing all the deer and had a great time with my dad. Although Zac didn’t grow up in a hunting family and had had no previous exposure to being out in the woods and around wildlife, he got a good taste of what I’ve always had the privilege to enjoy.
Zac and I had only been dating for about 7 months at that time, and to be honest, having my dad ask my boyfriend to help out felt somewhat awkward. That was the first time that Zac and my dad had spent any time together without my mom or me being present. I was really nervous about how things might turn out. My dad can be a real jokester, and he can come across as very sarcastic, but he’s only kidding. I was wondering to myself, “What if my dad says something very rude, and Zac doesn’t figure out that he’s just joking. Or, what if my dad says something that totally embarrasses me?” While I couldn’t help but worry about what might happen, I could rely on the fact that I knew my dad would introduce Zac to the experience of hunting. This was Zac’s first time in the woods, and I knew my dad would help him, since it was his first time out. I knew dad would explain a lot about hunting to Zac to help him understand what hunting and especially bowhunting involved. I was pretty relieved after the first hunt when Zac told me that he had had a really good time, and that he had learned a lot from my dad. I knew that during their time together, things could have turned out badly between my dad and Zac, but I also realize that whoever I date has to be okay with my parents.
After Zac and my dad spending two afternoon hunts together and getting along well, Zac and I now can make more trips to the farm during hunting season. Too, if I’m hunting and being filmed, now I know that Zac will have a really good time running the camera for dad. From this experience, I’ve learned that my dad’s idea of his taking my boyfriend hunting wasn’t a bad idea. I also think that the relationship Zac and dad have built from two afternoons in a tree stand together have helped each of them get to know each other better, and also makes things better for me.
Tomorrow: Taylor Drury Talks about Her School, Friends and Bowhunting
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