Meeting mentors in unexpected places

As part of my journey, I have been participating in forums that discuss shooting. One thread I commented on asked whether men should push their female partners to learn to shoot and train. I replied:

I’ve been involved with several men who were very proficient with firearms, had a CCW and carried. I asked every one of them to take me to the range and teach me. None of them did. So this year I decided to stop waiting on someone else to hold my hand and just get started.

I signed up for an NRA First Steps Pistol class. I have made new friends, been encouraged by strangers, and I was a grinning fool after my first class.

If/when there is a partner, I will likely be the one pushing him to train.

One of the responses I got was a private message from a local guy, but a total stranger to me. So I gave him a polite brush off. And he politely accepted it. And proceeded to help me hunt down some information on my revolver. He built some credibility with me, offered some advice and shared his experience related to getting a CCW license.

Eventually I met him (and his mom!) for bagels and coffee. He offered to let me shoot several of his pistols when I was doing my due diligence in selecting a 9mm for myself. He’s still one of the people I consider a cheerleader in my pursuit of shooting skills. He’s knowledgeable without being judgmental. And I met him on the internet. Go figure…

He let me shoot his .357 with both .38 and .357 ammo after explaining to me that it would shoot both (yet another thing I didn’t know…). And he managed to capture my muzzle blast with his cell phone so he could send me home with a memento!

May 9, 2012: .357 muzzle blast