Thursday, June 23, 2005

Zelda's Piece

Several years ago, I was at a gunshow in downtown Houston. It was quite a sight. I had never seen so many firearms in one place before. I was looking around for something that Zelda could use to defend herself with because I always keep my sidearm with me. I knew she was going to take the class but I thought that I'd teach her how to shoot first before she took the field test. I walked around and saw this beauty.

I've fired a Beretta before and knew they were extremely reliable. Not once did it ever jam on me. I thought about getting it but wanted to see if there was something else that might catch my attention. When I finished looking around, I thought that that was the gun for Zelda's protection. If anyone has seen "Lethal Weapon" with Mel Gibson, it's the same thing that he carried except this one had a beautiful finish. I walked back to the vendor who was selling it and saw that it was missing. I wanted to ask the vendor if he put it away, but he was finishing a sale to a black woman in her 30s. As I waited, I noticed that she was purchasing the gun that I wanted to get for Zelda. I was about to walk away since it was obvious that I lost the chance but something was wrong. He was taking quite a long time to finish with her. Eventually, he said "sorry" and took the gun back.

I asked him if the Beretta was still for sale. He told me, "It is now. You want it?" I asked him if that lady wanted it or not. He said that she did but she didn't pass the background check. Lucky me. He asked me before he put the gun back and started all of the necessary paperwork if I was sure I would pass the background check. I didn't say anything. I just showed him my Concealed Handgun License. He was quite happy to see that I had it because it proved that I already had a background check done. The gun was now I mean Zelda's.

It was quite a while after I bought it for her that Zelda finally agreed to go with me to the gun range. She seemed excited until she stepped into the range area. Then, someone else fired a shot. It scared her. She didn't expect it to be so loud even with hearing protection on. I bought her additional foam ear plugs to stick in her ear underneath the heavy duty ear covers. Still, she was frightened. I instructed her on the use of the weapon. The entire time, she looked like she wanted to curl up into fetal position. I handed her the gun and she held it. She fired once and put it down. She ran out of the range and sat in the lobby.

I followed her and asked her if she was okay. She was a little scared to say the least. I asked one of the employees of the range to help me. They talked to her and even allowed us to start her out with one of their .22 cal pistols. They even opened up a part of the range that was closed specifically for her so that the noise wouldn't scare her so much. Very friendly staff at Top Gun.

Zelda still had the hardest time moving up past the .22 cal pistol. I think after what happened the other night has given her the courage she needs to give it another try. Maybe now she can actually fire that beauty that I bought for her so long ago.