Last weekend I attended my first-ever Dallas Safari Club (DSC) Convention, and was I ever blown away.
Though I met hundreds of new people (as well as saw a lot of old friends), I’ve never before had such a feeling of “going home.” The genuine hospitality of every single person, from the president and the executive director of DSC to the exhibitors to the membership, right on through the wait staff at the dinners, was beyond compare. Those Texans know how to make a Yankee feel welcome, whether he’s there to book a dozen hunts or if he’s only there to "see the show."
I wish I’d started going to the DSC Convention long ago, and now that I’ve started it will be a hard habit to break. I can thank my friend, Larry Weishuhn, for breaking the ice.
Out on the show floor was the Ruger Stage, which presented nearly continuous programs and entertainment, one of which was “Larry Weishuhn’s Campfire.” Folks attending the show could take a load off for a while and listen to some tales of humor and adventure, just like they were sharing a campfire with Mr. Whitetail.
Larry invited me to come on down and join him on stage, along with South African Professional Hunter Frikkie Du Toit. Larry started some stories and asked some questions, then we just got rolling like we’ve done in hunting camps together so many times before. It was a ball, and our hour seemed to fly by for me.
Larry poked some fun at me about my nearly unnatural fear of snakes (which you know has improved based on the video we posted here a while back of me getting within 10 yards of fighting Texas rattlers).
I held my own with a story about Larry working through the night in the chow hall at a bunkhouse camp we shared once in Texas. It was a hot night, so Larry was only wearing his trademark 10-gallon hat and his tighty whiteys while he pecked away at the keyboard on his laptop computer.
Another hunter in camp walked out to the dining haul in the middle of the night in pursuit of a midnight snake. When he saw Larry, he stopped mid stride, speechless to see his idol in such a light. Larry, never at a loss for words, simply looked up from the screen and said, “Damn glamorous job … ain’t it?” and went back to hunting and pecking.
Those who stopped by to take a listen sure seemed to enjoy it, so I hope it’s not the last time I get to share “Larry Weishuhn’s Campfire” on stage. But even better, I know it won’t be the last time we share the real thing.
Thanks for inviting me, Larry, and for turning me on to the Dallas Safari Club. I’ll be back!