Sometimes squirrel hunting can be more about staying awake than stalking. Yesterday, I brought Debbie along with me to hunt squirrels at the Patuxent River State Park. I carried my Ruger Mark III pistol and she used my Winchester '94; both are .22s. We didn't see anything, perhaps because it was so chilly and windy but we enjoyed sitting out in the woods talking and joking. We shot a few cans we found laying around and called it a day after only a couple of hours. At one point, I was so comfortable, I nearly fell asleep. This wouldn't be the first time this has happened. I've fallen asleep in the woods quite a few times. I think its because the forest is the most soothing and peaceful place I can imagine. The constant rustle of leaves, warm sunshine and contemplation just put me right out.
Nov 24, 2013
Nov 17, 2013
Friday, I stopped in to a local antique shop. I pass this shop almost every day and decided I might as well have a look around; you never know what might be in there. Sure enough, there was something there. This old shotgun is nothing special. The owner asked $75 for it, but I ended up talking him down to $50. It is Belgian made and it's an oldie (Imported by the boatload between 1890 - 1910) but its nothing more than an old hunting gun. Stamped on the top of the barrels is BELGIAN LAMINATED STEEL and stamped into the sides of the receiver plates is T PAKRER. The barrels are made of Damascus (twisted, laminated) steel which makes it unusable. The way these barrels were made back in the day, was by twisting strips of iron and steel together, heating those strips red hot and welding the pieces together. The strips were then heated again, wrapped around an iron bar called a mandrel and welded by heating and hammering. The resulting tube was finished into a barrel. Never as strong as a barrel bored from solid steel, those barrels were quite attractive. But the welds were never absolutely solid. Over the years, corrosion from the old primers, and from black powder residue was forced by the pressure of firing into the tiny cracks and crevices between the strips that make up the barrel. Essentially eating away at the metal from the inside out. A Damascus barrel can look good on the outside, and the bore can appear shiny and like new, yet the metal inside can look like orange lace from the years of rusting away, unseen.
But, it is a pretty gun, its a simple old hammer gun with a nice shape. Perhaps it was a gun that regularly put food on the table or perhaps someone's absolute favorite gun. For me, it will be a wall hanger and a neat piece of history.
Nov 14, 2013
|Nature using synthesized nature as a habitatual asset?|
Nov 13, 2013
I'm working nights this week. So, I'm fixing little odds and ends that go untouched during the regular work week. Yesterday I patched the hole in the deck of our push mower before wheeling it out to the shed for its winter slumber. (Rest well my little mower. ... I'm, most likely, taking you to the dump in the spring!) We bought this push mower, used, for $50 this spring. It's really on it's last legs. I thought pop-riveting a Natty Boh can patch to its side, was the least I could do, as a sign of respect, for this "keep on truckin'" mower.
Nov 11, 2013
I woke up at 7:00am this morning and stepped out side into the cool morning air. It's a beautiful Monday morning in Westminster, Maryland. The sun poked through the row of pine trees in my back yard and long narrow swaths of sunlight stretched out across the dew soaked lawn. A stiff breeze lifted and rolled our flag perched on the side of the carport and I suddenly realized how fortunate I am to live in this country. I'll probably never fully agree with the way the country operates, or who's really in charge, but I will always be grateful to have been born an American. Moreover; grateful to those who have fought and who still fight to protect our freedoms (however fast those with power try to remove them from us).
So, this Veterans Day, I'd like to thank my brothers, my father, my grandfather, my uncles, my cousins, my coworkers and friends that have served our country, putting it all on the line, so that I can walk outside and be at peace and enjoy the life of a free American.