Y-man here again, apologies for the long silence once again…
About my trip to the US in February this year: well, some ancient Roman said it all: “I flew over, I shot a lot, I purchased even more!” I had a swell time in the US, Dallas and in Atlanta. Even the cold weather, snow, iced up roads and power cuts did not dampen my experience or cool the excitement I had (See what I did there? “Dampen”, “Cool”? Ha ha! )
I am not going to bore you guys with a lot of words: the pictures and videos below tell a spectacular story themselves.
I got into Dallas on 04February, after the Delta flight out of Lagos had to make an unscheduled stop in Orlando before connecting through Atlanta because the plane almost ran out of fuel earlier than planned due to headwinds. Man, it was okay, but quite a bit scary.
In Dallas, I was hosted by one of our own; a writer on The Firearm Blog: Alex C. who made it a wonderful experience. Many thanks to you Alex C!
He showed me the sights, I got to meet his lovely, kind folks and friends, and he got me a Cowboy hat. I am now a certified Texas cowboy… (By coincidence, the nickname for my hometown here in Nigeria is “Texas” – Red dust, rustic and hot, filled with rascal “cowboys”, and many lovely chiquitas… Ha ha!)
I would like to thank Alex C. from the depths of my heart, for his hospitality, his patience in showing me how things work, and to appreciate his exceptional shooting skills, and candid, incisive challenging nature. America: you have an asset there in Alex C!
I asked him at one point how it felt for him to actually be making someone’s dreams come true… He just gave his quiet humble laugh, and said, pointing to a new target: “Why don’t you do a mag dump on that one there now…”
I also got a warm welcome from Alex’s folks…
I got a whole lot of shopping done (I pre-ordered from Amazon – an amazing range of power tools, knick-knacks, gadgets and accessories, as well as spare camera batteries, chargers, and weirdly: a complete bee-keeping suit and hood for my dad. I even ordered screws for woodwork, nuts and bolts of much better quality than we get at home, ) We also visited many shops for much more: a HD camcorder, a new laptop, some clothes from BassPro and a lot more…)
I ended up paying Delta Airlines a whopping $ 600 for my excess baggage… Imagine then how much I had spent on the items themselves… (I actually had calls from Amazon customer care… My bank in Nigeria kept calling to confirm it was really me on the shopping spree! Ha ha!)
With Alex’s kindness, I also got to do the cheesy “touristy-sightseeing” bit too including the visiting of the infamous Dealey Plaza (And gauging the possible bullet trajectories from the Texas School Book Depository window and possibly from “The Grassy Knoll” for myself, and not from that world-famous grainy Zapruder film. I reserve my personal views on THAT conspiracy…Wow.)
I met up with many new friends, and I got to view a wonderful car collection. Click on picture for a larger view.
It all really touched me deeply.
I also got some sleepy “me” time in my hotel when the Dallas area got snowed in. Broke in some of my new tools, and cameras and stuff (“Broke in”, since we were in Texas, with the wild horses and all… Ha ha!)
Alex and I almost got rear-ended once due to the icy conditions. (And we witnessed the Honda BARELY miss being crushed by a big rig truck…)
I enjoyed the Texan cuisine very much too: but concentrated on what foods I enjoy abroad so much that I got to be called “Mr. Potato Salad” at a few places. It got so that I could walk into some places, and they would get my order set up without my uttering a word sometimes… ( “One order coming up! Potato salad, mashed potatoes and gravy, and Dr. Pepper…”)
Of course, no visit of Texas is complete without shooting guns! With the help of Alex and his friends: CJ and Chris (Great guys!), I got to do quite a lot of “gun tourism” at the Dallas Fort Worth Range, and some private remote land out of town: and was able to do some firearm analysis too. Of note is the fact that I finally got to do some full-auto shooting AT LAST… (In all my experience, even in the Military, I never did get to do this.)
Enjoy the few sample pictures and videos below… (They speak for themselves! And several weeks after, I still have my trigger finger in a trembling, joyful claw, and my face is still frozen in an almost maniacal grin because of ALL the fun I had. Everyone says I look rested, cordite smoke does that to you…Clears the pores and freshens your skin. Ha ha!)
I shot as varied a range of firearms from the TINY North American Arms.22 Magnum Mini-Revolver, to the Smith & Wesson Model 29-2 Revolver in .44Magnum (Well, do you feel lucky, punk?), to the EARTH-SHAKINGLY MASSIVE Barrett M107 in .50BMG. In between: I got to shoot the AK 74 (with a wonderful muzzle brake), FN FNC 5.56×45 in full auto, the SCAR 17 7.62×51 (Which was a solid, sweet-shooting, instinctively ergonomic rifle, but shooting it was spoiled for me by the ACOG, through which I just could not focus well… Maybe its my eyes?), HK MP5, FS2000, Uzi, UMPs, even the venerable classic M3 Grease-gun and the M1 Garand. In terms of age range, I shot from the 1896 Mauser C96 Broomhandle to the modern Kriss Vector…
Many thanks to Alex C, for being a great cameraman, all faults to the poor quality of the videos are mine.
I got to shoot twenty-five different firearms in different calibers and “lit off” almost two thousand rounds of ammo … What an adventure! Definitely crossed off my bucket list! What more can I ask? I can die happy now!
(Many more videos on my YouTube channel.) Please leave a comment or two…
I reluctantly left Dallas for Atlanta to close out some work related stuff on the 9th, and I ended up spending two days snowed in there.
(I never noticed the flag above my head until later. Ultimate selfie! Take that, Bradley Cooper!)
I volunteered when an ice-laden bough fell on a house not far from the hotel I stayed… I did some more shopping, and made sure to visit the Stoddard Guns and Range twice before finally leaving for home (With 4 massive suitcases!) on 15th February. At the Stoddard’s range, I finally got to shoot the AK 47 in 7.62x39mm, the Beretta M92 9mm and the KEL TEC KSG shotgun with buckshot, which I felt is a BEAST!
I did NOT enjoy shooting that shotgun –the KEL TEC KSG – at all (too loud, high recoil, my poor slide racking, painful welts on my fingers…)
Oh: the queen of the ball was getting to shoot the Kriss Vector in .45 full –automatic…
All told, it was a good trip, and I had fun. I learnt a lot too, and was able to get a few needed items back with me (A few “rustling handshakes” here and there. Alex, C.J. and Chris know what I’m talking about… Ha ha!)