Hey Mike, I WISH YOU HAD WON! I didn't even buy a ticket for that raffle, but my mind drifts off every night dreaming I am going (hunting). I spent a lot of my former career away from my family. At that time it was difficult to correspond, other than by mail, snail mail!
We made it through those times as many others had before us. I'll tell you all that living far away and being shot at is not the life any man wants. For some of us, it is/was the life we chose, however. For me, the trick was not to dwell on my family constantly, not to make them overpowering in my life, because there was no way to visit with them, except in letters (ink and paper)
I learned to go to sleep dreaming of hunting. It simply made me smile... rather than cry.
So, perhaps this is why I am such a fan of hunting and family too.
There's no doubt that a quality photo from a hunt or a special harvest we have made adds immensely to the memories of that hunt that we take from that day forward. Having a picture framed sitting on our desk at work, mantel at home or stuck on a dresser in our bedroom can take us back to that special time and place in an instant and that's something very special. Some hunters enjoy a mount hanging on a wall, and all the memories it keeps inside it's furry or feathered exterior. Some don't...