So, there I was, up, yesterday morning, showered, dressed, ready to walk out the door at 7:16. I had told Brendan, that I wanted to leave our house by 7:00 or 7:15 at the latest. When I looked around at 7:16 yesterday morning, Brendan was nowhere to be seen. I went upstairs and knocked on his door, then again louder the second time, then heard a mumbled "yeah". I asked if he was up and got another mumbled yeah. I told him it was already after 7:15 and I went back downstairs. Amazingly, less than 5 minutes later he was ready to go. We made a quick stop for some breakfast sandwiches and a bagel for me at the bagel shop, then we headed to Haylie's house to pick her up (Brendan's girlfriend) and we were off. We got up to the Westchester County Center in White Plains by about 0830 or 0835. It turned out, we were about the 6, 7th and 8th persons on line. Not too shabby and we got free parking on the street too. Too bad about one thing. In my early morning haze, I forgot to grab the dollar off coupons I had printed up. I remembered soon after we had left the house but decided it was not worth going back.
At about 0845, they opened he doors and let us inside to buy our tickets and wait on line inside where it was a lot warmer. Well, that is they let in about 25 or 30 people on line, the rest were stuck outside except maybe for another 8 to 10 in the vestibule. That is one of the advantages of getting there early beside the more obvious one of being at the head of the line and thus getting inside quicker to find a good deal quicker and maybe make a really great buy. Oh, before I forget, I wound up wishing I had brought the dollar off coupons after all, the admission fee was a whopping $12 ahead. I paid for all three of us, what are father's for anyhow. It was right about 9 exactly when they let us into the actual exhibition hall and we went in and right to the gun tables. Brendan and Haylie went one way and me another.
It was not long after we entered the exhibition hall, heck only seconds after we went inside, that I noticed there was no way they actually had 350 tables set up or if they did then it sure did not look like it. I also noticed there was a distinct shortage of guns for sale. Yes there were tables with guns, just not enough of them and way too many selling things like: knives, leather goods, books, Nazi and other war memorabilia, a military display that took up the space for at least 20 tables or more. I did not mind seeing the display of military weaponry and vehicles and our some of our military personnel manning the display, in fact liked it. I meant to spend some time looking it over more but wound up not getting the chance as things later turned out.
As for guns, I saw only one that really caught my eye and when I recognized it, I rushed over to it to check it out. It was a Remington Model 8, and if you know me, you know I want one in .35 Remington. The Remington Model 8 was chambered in about 4 different, and new at the time, calibers. Only one of those is still commercially available today and that is the .35 Remington. When I looked at the tag on this Model 8, I saw the price and thought wow, this could be a great buy, a steal, especially if they came down just a little, like maybe $75 or $50. You see, it was priced at only $450 and looked to be in fine to excellent condition. Then, the other thing I saw on the tag made my heart sink. It was chambered in .30 Remington, a cartridge, that to the best of my knowledge, is no longer commercially available and is only produced by handloaders. Too bad, I am pretty sure the dealer would have made a sale of at least one rifle yesterday had it been chambered in .35 Remington!
Soon after I saw the Remington, I got a call from my good friend Pete A. He left me a message saying he was on the line, so I walked out into the lobby to wait for him. As soon as I got out there, I heard him calling me. I don't remember if he has been to a gun show before or not. We walked around a bit, looking at this and that and sure as shit happening we got separated. Not unusual for a gun show if you stop to look at something and the guy with you just keeps going looking for whatever and not realizing you made a stop. Happens all the time. Not too long after that, Brendan called me to ask me a good price for 22 magnum ammo and I told him to hold off because I found some at a better price than he had. I met up with Pete again, found Brendan and Haylie and made the introductions.Soon, we were separated again, at least me from the rest of them.
Oh well, I walked around more and saw some AK's that caught my eye but decided against paying anywhere from $550 to about $600 for each, all Romanian WASR 10s. When I find one with a price like the one I got last year, I will pick it up and go home with it. Otherwise, I may just order one online and have it sent to a local FFL. Most of the rifles I looked at today were really overpriced. It is a shame, you spend gas money, toll money, money on food for the trip, a good chunk of change to get into the show, then find most of the things overpriced! Ammo was likewise for most of it although there were some okay deals here and there. As a matter of fact, the only thing I picked up at the show was 500 rounds of Fiocchi .22 Winchester Magnum at $70 for the brick. That was not a great price but it was a decent one. I could probably find it at about the same price online but then would have to pay shipping and maybe additional tax. This was $70 out the door, so it was a bit of a deal.
Just after I bought the ammo, I met up with Rob, a friend of mine and the brother-in-law of my former co-worker and good friend Charlie K. I asked him if Charlie was there and he said they had just been right next to each other and then Charlie disappeared. I told you, separation from the people you are with at gun shows is common. Then again, you are bound to run into one another again if there long enough. We ran into Brendan and Haylie, I again made introductions, them to Rob. The next thing I knew, much sooner than expected, Brendan and Haylie were telling me they would be outside in the car waiting for me. I guess that must have been around 10! I was surprised but not too much since there were not as many guns on display as one would have expected. I told them I would be another 15 or 20 minutes or so. Rob and I walked around, talking a bit. We found Charlie a few aisles over from where Rob and I had met up. Charlie was happy to see me as I was to see him. He is a good friend for many years, we used to work together in the Customs Service. I told him Pete was there, Pete was also a former co-worker of both of us. All of us are happily retired now but our bonds have not been broken, I am quite happy to say that. After a bit, I found Pete and brought him to where I thought Charlie and Rob would be by then and somehow made the connection on my first try, much to my surprise. Next thing you knew, I was with Pete and could not find Charlie and Rob! Sadly, by then, I had to tell Pete I was taking off. I was feeling really pooped and my hips were aching and Brendan and Haylie already had been out in the car for close to a half hour. It seemed time had flown much swifter than usual. I had hoped to leave the show closer to lunchtime and for us to go out to lunch with Pete, Charlie and Rob but it was not going to happen. As a matter of fact, I did not even get to say goodbye to Charlie and Rob because I could not find them. Oh well, they will understand.
Right at 1049, I was outside on my way to he car. I know that was the time because Brendan had gotten antsy and called me on my cell phone (I just looked to see when he called me). When he called, I already was basically hobbling down the street toward the car, hobbling because my hips were really bothering me. I guess that was due to me standing and walking around, for longer than I have at one given time during most of my recuperation. Perhaps, it will make me stronger. All too soon, I was back in the car and we were off toward home. Heck, not even a full 2 hours inside the exhibition hall and we were leaving. I do have to admit though, I was ready to leave this one, there were not enough guns and those that were there were not priced as good as they should have been. Damned recession has everyone raising their prices trying to make enough to eke out a living. Oh well, there is the upcoming show in Syracuse to think about. It will be in April, I think, and is a 1,000 table show. Both Brendan and I were duly impressed when we went there last year; we both bought rifles and other things while there.
For my more immediate future, I have to think about getting to the range. The Marlin 25MN could use some exercise and I now have more than enough ammo to have a couple hours of fun with it, that is if I shoot it slowly. I am almost willing to bet that today would be a good day to head to the local indoor range. I kind of doubt there will be a big crowd there since it is Super Bowl Sunday. I figure most people will be out shopping for snacks and beer or preparing things like hot wings, dips, and other delectables for their Super Bowl parties. Me, I'll watch the game but I will try to get to the range before that. That will depend on how I am feeling and if I can use one of our cars which is none to easy a feat for me lately.
All the best,
Broken Palo Verde Limb
5 hours ago