A Ten Pound Bag
Chapter 23: A day at the Gun Show

Copyright© 2020 by Emmeran

We awoke at first light; I was quickly reverting to my farm boy roots. Michelle and I were the first up and out in the world; after a quick morning snuggle we showered and walked down to start the chores. Matilda had coffee ready as we came back from finishing with the horses. The emotional flush of our evening together was still upon us and I invited her to accompany me to the gun show at the fair ground that I had planned to attend that day. She enthusiastically agreed.

She needed to tend her horses and freshen up at home so we arranged to meet near the show and only worry about parking my truck in the actual parking area.

My infatuation was confirmed I as fussed about like a teenager getting ready to go on his first date; I even stopped to clean the truck on my way into to the city to meet her. We met up at a café near the show, I was waiting for her in a booth with coffee for both of us. She walked through the door of the café looking simply amazing to my besotted mind; she gave me a sweet, quick kiss and we talked about my goals for the day while we drank our coffee.

The gun show was predictably a mess, actually worse than most trade shows I’d ever attended. The vendors were placed by bid and that was basically the only order to the layout. Food and strong drink were offered so lunch wouldn’t be a problem, which was good news – I was actually in the mood for a little bit of “county fair” food. Still, it was a noisy mess.

We set off to find my primary objectives, me holding her hand and leading her through the mass of people ranging from a farmer with manure on his boots to the guy in the decent business suit; we even had a very large contingent of folks walking around dressed up in battle-gear like they were heading into a firefight with the Taliban immediately after lunch.

I had four primary objectives for this shopping trip, firstly I wanted a good pump action 12-gauge for hunting. As with everything else I needed all the associated items including ammo, cleaning kit and sling. After that I wanted the other tools I was familiar with and they were pretty simple and all available under Oklahoma law. I intended to purchase a M16A2 replica, a M1911A1, the shotgun and a 30.06 hunting rifle.

I wasn’t and still am not a big gun guy, generally I consider them in the same context I consider my axes and chainsaws; I was here to purchase tools in my mind. I wanted my M16A2 and my M1911 to be basically new standard issue and with any luck they would simply live in my gun safe forever. My shotgun and hunting rifle should be works of art, I could afford it and that’s the way I preferred it.

Our initial focus was on the M1911, finding a high-quality reproduction took a little time but I managed to find an example the weapon I had carried for so many years. The M16A2 took a little longer, everyone wanted to upsell me and make me battle ready. I ended up buying directly from Colt and I actually made my first splurge of the day and purchased a match grade rifle from them as well, it was a magnificent piece and I just decided to treat myself.

So far so good, so we decided to have lunch. The infatuated love birds that we were at that moment we got a little carried away, a few too many drinks and not enough actual lunch were consumed at that noon break. It was fun, and by the time we returned to the buying floor we were tipsy and impulsive.

We returned to shopping.

Have you ever gone drunken Christmas shopping? That’s when you have a few too many drinks and buy things for people you would never buy and you have a great time doing it. Then when you get home you look at everything and ask yourself, “What the hell was I thinking”.

Well, we went drunken gun shopping. It started with the shotguns; I wanted a simple pump action 12 gauge for bird hunting. Sadly, most of the offerings were militarized or camouflaged and I wanted a nice wood stock suitable for display as well as practical for use. Camouflaging a long gun seems stupid to me, the net effect being to disguise it as a leafy branch instead of a stick of wood.

My search led me to a dealer in the back corner of the floor who specialized in custom made and collectable weapons. I bought a beautiful handmade pump-action shotgun and then immediately fell in love with an antique side-by-side double they had in a case. I inquired about the gun and was told that the original was display only but they had handmade replicas available; they had one on hand for marketing purposes. I bought it.

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