Friday, October 22, 2010

It's Like Christmas In October ... Or Something

The Silicon Swamp is not a big city.  While it's not really possible to see one from our back porch, on the right kind of night it's possible to see the lights of the big city from the back porch, though.  (Those nights are are marked by a cloud deck over the whole state, typically around the passage of a cold front.)  I say that so you know we don't have a really good gun and sporting goods shop like Bass Pro or Cabelas* here in town.  The nearest Bass Pro is over "in the big city" and is a 2 1/2 hour round trip, not including time in the store.  There's a Gander Mountain another hour farther away, so I've never been there.

Back in August, our local Bass Pro Shops was running a pre-hunting season sale with a few low priced loss leaders.  What struck my eye was a Savage 64F rifle, a semi-automatic, magazine loaded .22 rifle for $110.  The ad had the magic phrases "Limited Quantities" and "One Day Only" to further peak my interest.  As part of our continuing training, Mrs. Graybeard and I are trying to arrange for an Appleseed weekend, so we need a couple of good .22s.  While you can bring any kind of rifle, for the two of us to bring anything bigger than a .22 has a serious cost disadvantage.  We only have one AR (at the moment) and even then, the thought of running through 500 rounds each at 35 or 40 cents per round vs. 4 cents a round makes the .22 that much more attractive.  My limited talks with folks who have done an Appleseed event says that most people bring Ruger 10/22s. 

So we made note of the day this deep discount would be available and waited.  And waited.  We set the alarm for right around dark-thirty so that we could make the hour-and-change drive in time to be there for their opening.  Even made it with 10 minutes to spare.  That's when I made my big, dumb mistake.  Instead of running directly to the hunting department, we stopped at "the facilities" first.  When we got to the counter, it looked like the local grocery store deli on one of the big Bowl Game days, or even Super Bowl Sunday.  I hit the "Take A Number" thingy and got a number for each of us - 83 and 84.  I looked at the deli sign.  It said, "Now Serving 49".  Aw, crap.  It looked like at least an hour wait (it was almost 2 1/2).  I should have gotten the number and then hit the facilities.  

Red Ryder carbine-action, two hundred shot Range Model air rifle with a compass in the stock.  No, wait.  The Savage 64F. 

By the time they called our number, I had read the Hornady Reloading Handbook, (though not cover to cover) and the rifles were long gone.  The girl at the counter was nice enough to offer us rain checks, which really surprised me, then told us we were getting the last two rain checks.  So we waited.  And waited.  The first gun came in the week before my trip out west.  The second one came in this Wednesday.  It's almost like Christmas in October. 

Tomorrow we make the 150 mile (round trip) pilgrimage to pick up our new toys.  Sunday by 9AM we ought to be well into a box. 
Breakfast of Champions
*On our last day in Utah, we stumbled across a Cabelas store in a city called Lehi, 20 minutes south of Salt Lake City.  I could have signed over my paychecks and moved in.  It was way better than our local Bass Pro. There are no Cabelas in the entire southeast. 

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