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Recently on an evening radio news show, the host and a guest were discussing that fewer people these days take the time or effort to say, “Thank you.”
There were several speculations as to why. Younger people aren’t taught to say it, people just expect more, and some just have learned or don’t care about good manners. Maybe they don’t appreciate what they receive and what they have.
It seems the right thing to do to thank the waitress at the cafe for filling up my coffee cup, the pharmacy tech at the drug store for smiling and obtaining my scripts quickly, the woman at the hardware store for helping find an item. I’ve heard people say it is unnecessary. That’s their job.
However for me, a “thank you” is in order for good service and a smile. It just seems right. My grandkids do say it. Others should too.
OK Junker, why the “thank you” sermon?
It had been on my mind, and then a friend, Tammy Sapp, sent me a news release from the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department, which seems to be right on target related to the subject and the time of year. It’s relevant whether you are in New Hampshire or Kentucky.
“If you’re a hunter or angler, the holiday season is an important time to extend thanks to landowners who share access to their land, says Charles Miner Jr., who heads up the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department’s Landowner Relations Program.
“The generosity of landowners often makes outdoor experiences possible, especially in a state like New Hampshire with more than 70 percent of land under private ownership,” says Miner. “It really makes a difference when you take the time to let landowners know you appreciate their allowing access to hunt and fish on their property.”
A few ways to say thanks to landowners:
• Visit the landowner at the end of the season to express your appreciation, and, if possible, provide them with some of your harvest.
• Send a personal note or holiday card to the landowner, thanking them for sharing their land.
• Send a gift basket, Fish and Wildlife Calendar, magazine subscription, or gift certificate to a local restaurant.
• Help them protect their property by documenting and reporting suspicious activities.
• Offer to help with outdoor tasks, or to clean up and properly dispose of illegally dumped materials left on their property.
If you are mentoring a young hunter or angler, be sure to include them in thanking the landowner — it’s a great lesson for them to learn!
“Remember — the tradition of hunting will only continue if we all follow the basic principle of landowner relations: Treat the landowner as you would like to be treated and treat their land as you would like yours to be treated.
“Fish and Game’s Landowner Relations Program works in partnership with landowners, hunters and anglers to identify problems landowners experience in providing access, and work proactively to address them.
“As the foundation of the Landowner Relations Program’s efforts to work with landowners who provide access for hunting, Operation Land Share provides direct assistance to landowners to resolve issues resulting from sharing their land. Landowner Relations Program efforts are funded through generous donations, sponsorships and grants. If you’d like to help, or to learn more about the program, go to www.wildnh.com/landshare. Your support will help to provide access for present and future generations of hunters and anglers.
Many states have similar programs to make private land available to hunters, especially after the growing season is over. Such programs are important as hunting land and habitat shrink throughout the country.
“Funny that you had an article about sandhill cranes in the newspaper. I heard and then saw my first sandhill cranes of the fall migrating south only yesterday. A few minutes later I heard some others and looked up and saw my first whooping crane flying over the farm. It was with 15 sandhill cranes but larger and all white with jet black wing tips.
“The whoopers used to fly east of here near Louisville but changed to Southern Illinois a few years ago to avoid the Smokies. I have seen whoopers in Texas but never before in Indiana.
“You might tell your readers to make sure they know the difference. There would probably be a jail term for shooting a whooper.”
Contact outdoors writer Phil Junker by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or check out his blog at outdoorscribe.blogspot.com.