Generally if you ask a European the first thing they think of when thinking of Texas they will say one of the following: death penalty, oil rigs, cowboys (and/or all the related attire), horses, beef and guns. Since I no longer ride horses, am married so the cowboys are out (and am frankly too Italian for cowboy attire), and the death penalty is certainly not something I want to experience, I decided to go shooting today.
It probably will surprise no one to know that I have a fair few friends who own guns and use them to shoot things, I mean, what else would one do on a sunny Saturday morning? So we were thrilled when they kindly offered to take us shooting, though the kids had to stay home (see, we’re not barbarians!).
The first gun safety talk given to us by our friend (the giant you see hovering over me in the pictures), managed to thoroughly freak me out and elicited visions of me accidentally loosing control of the gun and shooting everyone in the range dead (thus seguing straight to the death penalty portion of this post). I regained some of my composure whilst reading the half-assed gun safety rules we initialed at the shooting range and the disclaimer that clearly stated they were NOT responsible if I lost control of my gun. (Although, they probably are responsible for cleaning up the mess afterwards). Thankfully, the giant’s wife found a shooting instructor to go over the rules with me and I got all jittery again, which is precisely the condition you do not want to be in when handling deadly firearms.
We “suited up” i.e. put on glasses and ear muff thingies, I opted not to put on two layers of ear protection cause I wanted to actually hear the instructions coming my way. Let me tell you, hearing a gunshot in closed quarters even whilst wearing ear muff thingies will make you jump about a foot off the ground for at least the first ten or twenty times, then you get used to it.
These are some of the things I learned today. Most people who handle firearms are not idiots and though they are very concerned that guns be handled properly they have no fear of the object in and of itself, which is strangely comforting. Gunshots are very loud. One must have a strong hold to properly shoot a gun, hence the sideways “gangsta rapper” hold should be avoided if you want to hit your target. Loading a gun is way, way harder than one would imagine. The casings are very hot and they will probably get in your shirt. This is NOT an excuse to lose control of your gun. Shooting at a target is a lot of fun.
|I scared the husband with this one|
|they have zombie themed targets, who would have thought...|
|you can even shoot at numbers|
Seriously, what better way to spend a Saturday with friends in Texas?
|on the windowsill behind us was a stuffed rattlesnake. I forgot to take a picture of it dammit!|
A heartfelt thanks to our friends for "risking their lives" with us today!