October 15, 2010
Dove “Hunting” Argentina Style (and dinner with the inventor of fishnet stockings)

It has been an interesting few days, to say the least, and while I didn't stick around and shoot enough to make my shoulder hurt, my jaw still aches a bit from hanging at such a strange angle for so long as I stood and gawked in awe at the incomprehensible spectacle literally flying before my eyes. We came to be in the province of Cordoba through an invitation from a fellow I know in Esquel who has recently opened a business to host wing-shooters up here. The lodging for this business is La Posada del Cazador, a wonderful and very comfortable mini-estancia with beautiful grounds, nice dogs, and an extremely friendly staff. This place was actually built by Omar Habraim Cooper, a gentleman recently retired from many decades in the textile industry, who also happens to be the inventor (not making this up) of fishnet stockings. Omar is a very nice fellow, and a joy to spend time with. He told us the story of the fishnets over dinner, saying that while the bulk of his families business at that time was in producing women's underwear, they also received a contract one year to weave actual commercial fishing nets. The idea of crossing the products then occurred to him quite naturally one day while simultaneously managing the two lines of production, and a cornerstone of fashion history was born. In the morning, Adolfo, the head-guide in charge, took me out at dawn to see what the shooting was like for the lodge's guests. I've hunted birds all my life: pheasants and grouse in the Midwest, quail, ducks, and geese all over the United States - even doves, a time or two in the south; but nothing I've ever seen could have prepared me for what goes on in the skies of this region of Argentina every single day. I find myself at a loss for words even now, as I try to write it down.  The sheer number of birds is astounding beyond description. Quite literally, they fill the sky. And it just goes on and on, as far as the eye can see in all directions. When Adolfo finally put the shotgun in my hands I could hardly think of where to point the thing.  Eventually giving up on trying to wrap my mind around it though, I did shoot a few boxes of shells between episodes of gawking stupor.  Anyone interested in visiting this beautiful place please send me an email and I will put you in contact with the folks who can make it happen.