I was not raised around guns. I got into the business about ten years ago when the Gun Shop owner asked me to work for him doing paperwork.
This, I reasoned, was safe. I wouldn’t have to be around the guns except to skirt around them to the office. Well, that changed in 2003 when the main salesman got a more lucrative job. My boss came to me and said, “How’d you like to learn the gun trade?”
I said yes. I was still skittish around guns but I was determined to learn enough so that I was no longer scared; besides, I needed full time employment so I could support my kids.
The main salesman took the time to take me shooting, which was nice of him. The experience, however, was intimidating. Seriously, sledge-hammerly un-fun. .357mag. .44 mag. .45ACP. 9mm. .40–and a .22 Beretta Bobcat, which nearly jumped from my grasp.
So. I thought, “Oh, hell, no. I’ll work behind the counter, but I am not shooting again.”
About a month later, however, the sweetest little .22 came into the shop, and I was smitten. A Walther P22. I got the first generation, which has all the bugs–finicky about everything–so it was the perfect gun for me to learn on.
- I gained confidence about handling a firearm after it had jammed,
- I learned the importance of keeping it clean, and
- I learned about how ammunition can vary and affect gun performance. (CCI MiniMags are all mine likes.)
The P22 started my love affair with firearms. My next purchase was a Rock Island Officer’s Model, which I put Hogue grooved grips on and absolutely love. I have other guns as well–once you start, you may as well just prepare yourself for at least one gun purchase a year. Probably more. (here’s a link to one guy’s opinion about the RI 1911.) And here’s where another blogger writes about his experience with the Rock Island Tactical 1911. They’re inexpensive, so it’s tempting to think they’re too good to be true. Not so. 🙂 Terrific pistols. Never mind how many others I own. heh My heart belongs to Sig Sauer. And Glock. Oh, who am I kidding. Colt. Springfield. Ruger. I can’t pick just one.
I went from teaching handgun safety for the HSC cards and selling guns to teaching firearms classes to security guards. I’m an NRA-certified pistol instructor, NRA certified rifle instructor, NRA Chief Range Safety Officer, and a BSIS certified state firearms instructor. I no longer formally teach about firearms (I teach writing) but I am on the board of the local gun club, and I do love my guns.
You can read a little more about my first-time experience here at GirlsGuide2Guns–and while you’re there, check out the whole site. It’s both interesting and informative, and Natalie’s amazing.
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