Tuesday, April 17, 2012

A New Take on Date Night: We Had a Blast

I woke up this morning with an amazingly, astoundingly pounding headache.  I took Tylenol for it after the kids left for school, and lay down for awhile.  But although the pain subsided, the headache left me feeling a little disoriented all morning.  My eyes felt puffy and heavy, and my thinking was a bit clouded.  So mostly I got nothing done all morning, and instead rested on my bed while playing spider solitaire and checking my facebook.  I really did try to sleep, but sleep would not come for me.  I looked over at the book sitting on my "nightstand" (aka pile of bins and other detritus of trying to keep up with a household this busy).  I looked at that book and contemplated picking it up to read it.  But I just didn't feel like I had concentration enough for it.  Ugh.  I hate mornings spent like that.

Shortly before lunchtime, Joe came in to see how I was doing.  On a whim, I asked him whether he would have time in the afternoon to do a little shooting.  We have many handguns and I am allegedly supposed to be learning to use them and become comfortable with them.  But here's the rub.  I don't like paying for the ammo.  It feels very indulgent and wasteful even to spend our very limited money that way.  So Joe shoots more often than I do.  He has the carry permit and I have decided to just let my husband protect us if the need should ever arise. 

But I do like to shoot now and then.

We got a new gun over the winter.  A Ruger SR22.

Some might wonder what we are doing spending so much money on guns when we live on such a fixed income. And I think that's a valid question. But my husband has developed a little system. His system started, I think, when he was given a gun in lieu of an honorarium for performing a wedding. That got him to thinking...He is frequently given honorariums for performing weddings, funerals, or various other unexpected pastoral duties. These are unexpected moneys that area not budgeted. They are a bonus. So Joe has decided that these extra, unplanned dollars will go toward the purchase of any guns we hope to add to our collection.

Ruger SR22
Our new Ruger was a bit of an impulse purchase. But a very well-liked one. I had gotten an e-mail from Impact Guns announcing a promotional price on the new Rugers. So of course I had to find out what all the hoopla was about. I did a google search on them and followed a few links and eventually got to the Jeff Quinn video I posted above. He made this gun sound awfully fun. And when one is worried about the cost of ammo, a weapon that uses .22LR is a good choice because it is cheap, cheap, cheap compared to the other, larger loads. I have had a Ruger Mark III on my wish list for quite some time, for that very reason, but when I saw the SR22, I thought that it would certainly do just as well if not better for our plinking needs.

I posted about it on facebook, just kind of off-handedly. A few days later, Joe was feeling a bit antsy and couldn't concentrate on any of the many things he had to do now that Lent was upon him.  So he made a few phone calls, and headed to Bemidji's Gander Mountain to buy me the Ruger.   Isn't that sweet?  Who would have thought that all I had to do was post about a gun I like and he would run off to get it for me?  I bet it wouldn't work every time, though.

Bersa Thunder .
Now, Joe calls this gun mine, but I call it ours.  So far, of the guns we have that we call mine, this is the third.

I have a Bersa Thunder .380, which I really love.  I also have a Smith and Wesson Airweight, a snubnosed revolver in a lightweight metal, which I don't like at all.  Because of its light weight and short barrel, the recoil really hurts my hand.  And the trigger pull is very stiff, so after a few rounds, it hurts to both pull the trigger and afterwards. But now I also have the Ruger.

S&W Airweight
But until today, I had yet to shoot the Ruger.  I hoped that looking forward to getting out in the springtime air and doing something that I don't generally allow myself to do would help to clear my brain of the last vestiges of this morning's headache.  

So I got some lengthier youtube videos loading for the girls for a treat for quiet time, in the hopes that would keep them occupied for awhile.   (Did you know that many episodes of the PBS show, Zoom are on youtube in two parts each?  They take awhile to load, but they are about 15 minutes each so they keep the kids busy for awhile, if you need an occasional electronic babysitter.  And if you have a fast enough connection and computer, one video can be loading while the kids are watching the other.)

Joe was ready to go out first, so he did a little bit of setting up targets, and gathering the ear protection and the various guns and ammo.   I got the kids settled and did a quick pick-up of our lunch mess.  Eventually we both got outside to enjoy out date.  We went through maybe 150-200 rounds of the various calibers.  I think I loaded the two magazines of the Ruger four or five times, and for my Bersa about the same.  I only fired one magazine of Joe's 9mm Springfield XD. 

Joe did several magazines of the Ruger, too, and then also did a few of the Bersa.  He also shot his .17 HMR; and several revolvers.  He has a Taurus 64 and a Cimarron cowboy action that shoots .357.  And he also shot an S&W .44 that is on loan from Forrest M., an older member of one of Joe's churches who is a fellow gun hobbyist.  Forrest had at one time sent over his Desert Eagle for us to try out.  He also has a .50 BMG which we have not happened to use.  We've been told it costs about $5.00 a round.  When seen in that light, I don't think I ought to complain about the cost of my .380 rounds.

All in all we had a successful afternoon, with time spent together doing something we both enjoy.

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