Tuesday, February 10, 2009

'That' Shot

Don't you enjoy it when all of your time and effort pays off? When all the time you spent at the range translates into one perfect shot. I'm not talking about just any shot. I'm speaking of the one that all your buddies will be speaking about for years.

I have had several of those shots, I am not a braggart, most of the time I attribute them to luck. Today I was pondering my first of 'those' shots. I was about 14 years old and we were hunting in Central California. I was taking a break from the big game hunting. I had a little 22 auto pistol and was plinking a ground squirrels about 50 yards away. I really wasn't doing much more than pestering them. The dirt and dust was being kicked up and the squad of squirrels were looking at each other with befuddlement. I was steadily advancing up to about 15 yards. I reloaded my pistol and commenced to terminating the long tailed varmints. Suddenly there was only one remaining. He looked around at his slain partners...and charged. His mouth was agape and a scream of vengeful fury past his lips.

The men all stood behind me, laughing and pointing as the squirrel barreled toward me. I quickly debated my options, do I run in fear? Do I spray and pray? No, I calmly raise the pistol and fire one hastily aimed shot before the beast had opportunity to tip the scales in his favor. I see the bullet impact and lift the fury critter off the ground. He completes one full somersault before he lays there, still and motionless, peacefully asleep, excepting his lack of a head.

I would like to tell you that I was the hero of camp that night, however it would be a lie. The story is still told, so many years later, the squirrel gets further away every year. Some years the animal ends up at the foot of my boot, desperately clawing for it's revenge. The story actually happened how I tell it here and nothing more.

Th point is the shot itself. When you see the path of the bullet in your minds eye and make it happen. To me it is a surreal moment, one that you constantly train for and only seldom makes an appearance.

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