Wednesday, November 14, 2007

California 2007 (9)

The alarm will go off in 15 minutes and we will be finishing packing, breakfasting and leaving for the coast south of San Francisco via the Gold mining towns under the Sierras. It is the picturesque route not the freeways. I will rely on Clementine my sat nav friends. I program. She guides.

Our hosts were off to the airport an hour away in Sacramento at 4am, their daughter Esther driving. They are holidaying in Boston. Unfortunately Esther did not tell three year old Jacob this was the plan, so when he awoke five minutes after they left, we were in trouble. After five inconsolable minutes he stopped crying. Eventually he asked for a story, then a video, then he went to bed. but I thought I should stay up and explain ti Esther . She arrived at 6.30 so I have not slept much.

yesterday i had a haircut in honour of the forthcoming wedding. It is cheaper here than London. This was in grass valley 11 miles distant. While I was trimmed, the ladies shopped. I could not see them after the haircut so I went to sample the delights of what was advertised as the oldest saloon wast of the Mississippi. sadly there were none of the gals you see in the Westerns. I could not smoke a cigar and the bourbon price had increased dramatically.

After lunch out with the roes and a neighbour from the church, a lady meteorologist expert in satellite data, Dennis and I drove about 20 miles to the small-holding of Jason, a church member, who has a property with space enough for us to shoot. last time I was here I got to hold the guns but not to shoot. Yesterday I learned how to shoot a semi-automatic colt 45 and hit the target 3 times out of a 9 shot magazine at 25 yards. The 30 caliber rifle is more accurate. Bolt action, I got 2 out of 2 on target and quit while ahead. Surprisingly I felt no real kick from it. I would have from the next gun, a modern made, 50 caliber flintlock muzzle loader, but our host, Jason, got the ball stuck as he rammed it home and we had one jammed gun, no shots. Dennis then told me about pistol shooting up close and personal in Viet Nam. Lets's just say his targets were close and dangerous. He was shooting a Beretta automatic today. Pastors and gun control are different here. i love it. There are deer and mountain lion around Jason's place but you are only allowed to shoot deer. Mountain lions, it seems, need protection. They do though kill livestock at times and we heard the tale of a jogger who did not run fast enough a while back.

Home again with a little trauma on the way. I nodded off with my right hand outside the lowered jeep window. I woke shouting with two fingers painfully trapped in a closed window. I hollered for Dennis to stop raising the window, but it wasn't his fault. Falling asleep my left hand had slipped down onto the window switch and raised the window. better a self-inflected injury with the window than with those guns. Perhaps i should have entitled this, "How I injured myself going shooting".

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