Biloxi, Mississippi-(Ammoland.com)- They say you never forget your first love. I’ve stated before that the first gun I ever purchased was a Ruger 10/22 rifle on my 18th birthday.
Coincidentally, when I was a eighteen years old I worked at a record store. (For the youngins out there, ‘records’ were black vinyl discs that you’d spin around on a turntable and music could be heard.)
That record store was owned by a woman whose husband was into the outdoors and shooting. When he discovered we shared similar interests, he showed me his Ruger MkII .22LR pistol. Although I had a pretty fair amount of experience with a .22 rifle and shotguns, I was essentially a novice when it came to handguns.
One Saturday afternoon we loaded up into Mike’s pickup truck and drove to the county landfill, otherwise known as the ‘rimfire shooting gallery’. In addition to the requisite soup cans, beer bottles and the like, people would discard their old appliances, refrigerators, etc. A freshly disposed of appliance, free of bullet holes, was a prize to be sure. Mike explained the operation of the Ruger pistol, how to hold it and aim it. We started with relatively large targets. When those became too easy, he moved me on to pop and tin cans.
Nearly thirty years has gone by now and I can still recall that day. I found that I had a knack for handgun shooting. My eyes were young and clear and my reflexes sharp. That Ruger MkII seemed to me to be the perfect .22LR handgun. Mike let me shoot his Ruger pistol several times after that first day. Though I was still three years shy of being able to purchase one myself, but I put it on my ‘to do’ list.
Soon thereafter I would enlist in the Marine Corps and gain tremendous experience with centerfire handguns, but the Ruger pistol yet lingered in my thoughts. I was married and had children before I found a used MkII in a gun shop that seemed to by the exact replica of the one I’d learned to shoot with all those years earlier.
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