Mon, 26th Shooting XL’s Toys
About 1:40 pm on his return from work XL and I trooped up into his gun room; he invited me to make a selection of what I would like to shoot. I was overwhelmed, I wanted to say everything but then good sense prevailed. I only asked for the little Beretta Mod 950 .22 Short, pocket pistol and sagely left rest of the choice to him. Wise decision! XL expertly picked calibres, rifles, shotguns and hand guns that he thought appropriate – aiming for what I had not tried before in Mark’s place at Michael IL, way back in Sep 2012.
A small distraction here, we had to check out yet another of XL’s hobbies – RC Model Vehicles. A Military Hummer, a Stuart Tank and an indoor Police Helicopter complete with audio warnings, red/blue flashing lights and a Searchlight.
So the kid in us came to the fore and we had to try out these fabulous 1:6 scale models immediately. XL very generously allowed me to play with his toys and explained their salient features. We ran the Hummer over the grass in the backyard, independent suspensions, head and tail lamps, very powerful motor. Wow!
The Stuart tank featured authentic sounds of the powerful diesel, machine gun and main cannon which fired a red tipped shell. Forward/reverse, independent track, firing and turret controls, made it a real delight to play with. I was thrilled to bits!
We suddenly remembered the time and started assembling weapons, ammo and gear in a systematic fashion; cased, packed and arranged them just outside the man cave and then carried them down, in several trips to the Dodge Intrepid. Equipment all assembled, we topped off supplies with water and soft drinks into a cooler bag with blue ice and we were ready for the hot day that it promised to be!
XL had already made arrangements for us to go over to a family friend’s farm where the action was planned. We headed out and a 30 min drive brought us to Amboy and our kind host’s place. A very quiet, large, beautifully maintained farmhouse nestled amongst corn and soybean fields. The vista of the blue sky with a few scattered clouds and rolling landscape was serene and peaceful. I thought to myself, that we were soon going to shatter this stillness with loud gunfire.
We walked in said hello to our host Dean, who kindly offered us refreshments to stave off the effects of the hot and humid day. We chatted for a while and XL caught up on times and news with his friend. Dean said that he would join us as soon as we got set up. He felt it was too hot to go out too early!
We got cracking as it was about 3:00 pm and we had to achieve completion of all the firearms that XL had selected before sundown.
I sure had serious amounts of fun with XL’s amazing array of weapons, all very meticulously maintained. My one regret was that I did not have sufficient time to get to know each piece well before firing them – so little time and so much to do!
It was really hot and the fierce sun blazed down upon us mercilessly through the clear blue sky. Not a cloud in sight, now! Rivulets of sweat ran down our faces and into our eyes, but we hardly noticed the discomfort, while we prepared for action. We had come out here for a purpose and we would not to be deterred!
We started off with .22 Scoped Rifles (I had trouble getting the image through the scope as usual; I am seriously considering mounting a scope on a stick or blank butt and finding out why I have so much trouble gaining the image), went on to handguns and finished off with the shotguns.
Dean dropped in on our activities off and on, too excited not to join us but going back in as soon as the heat got to him. Then he would be out again in a bit – very sporting of him! On his first trip, he brought out his highly modified .22 scoped rile with a blue thumb-hole butt. I really liked this one as I was able to acquire a scope image fairly simply end emptied a dozen 10 shot mags. Fun!
Dean's heavily modified Ruger 10/22. Only the receiver and bolt are from the original Ruger.
Then he drove over a sort of John Deere - ATV that we used as a portable bench rest, giving us more flexibility to choose the range! Dean also participated in trying out some of XL’s guns that he had never tried out. He loves to make ‘noise’ and I empathised with him completely. I too love targets that go ‘audible’ when shot at!
Target's baby; a Polish Military training rifle
Beretta Model 950 in .22 short
SIG-Sauer P225 in 9mm
CZ75 P-06 in .40 S&W
Later on towards the end while we were trying out the shotguns my right shoulder (previously injured a couple of weeks ago) was twitching and protesting mightily. Now, which gun lover says ‘enough?’
Well, I reluctantly did and XL would not let me forget that fact for the rest of the trip!
Mossberg SA-20; a 20 ga. semi
After the sky dimmed and the faint almost, full moon started becoming visible, we gathered up all the equipment and guns, packed them away. We also collected selected brass, for reloading; the shot gun shells we dropped it off in a large oil barrel for disposal. The .22 casing we left back on the grass.
We then headed into the cool air conditioned interior of the farm house where our host had prepared nourishment. They insisted that we had to try at least a bit of sweet corn and some cold water. We did not want to tank up as Jo, XL’s wife had dinner ready. We thanked Dean and his family for their hospitality and kindness and headed back home – tired but happy!