Goats and Grace

We had a big family dinner last night to send the boys off to Washington. I made mountain goat enchiladas which are everyone's favorite. The meat is rich and stringy but tender when you cook it in a crock pot all day. It's  perfect for shredding inside flour tortillas and has a flavor sort of like lamb. It's hard to get a mountain goat though, and dangerous. My husband loves the steep mountain hunts in large part because they are so challenging. I like them too, for the walk and the view. Maybe that's why the celebratory dinners from goat meat are somehow more meaningful, there's so many layers to them. This one had lots of laughter thanks to the highly entertaining 20 month old Caroline Cooper and all the fun and rowdy guys-- my son-in-law, son and two friends, and daughter's boyfriend-- even my usually quiet husband joined in the kitchen clowning around. But this is also the time of year we lost a young, fun friend who fell while goat hunting, on a rainy fall day much like yesterday. Turns out that while I was assembling the meal another dear young friend had a near miss, and was bumping down a mountain on his butt with a broken leg after falling about 400 feet while guiding goat hunters. Thank goodness Stuart DeWitt is okay. We were sitting by the fire digesting when we heard the news. My daughter was on her phone relaying Stuart's brief conversation, so that's all I really learned. That, and that Stuart will be heading to Juneau to have the leg checked out by an orthopedic surgeon, and that he is so tough he didn't even need any pain killers. Being alive and well and resting in his cozy cabin with his beautiful wife and four week old son is narcotic enough. That is why I'll say a little grace before I eat a leftover goat enchilada for lunch, and another one when I send my son down the Alaska Highway tomorrow. I just want God to hold the people I love in the palm of his hand.  As Mary Chapin Carpenter sings, I know it's too much to expect, but it's not too much ask, is it?



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