I did it! I have not only completed and passed the Texas license to carry class (having already completed and passed the concealed handgun class several years ago), I also have completed my state application (which I did not do when I took my CHL), completed my finger printing and received my LTC in the mail.
Norman Colyer was my instructor and spent 4 classroom hours entertaining and educating a full room of folks. With an enormous amount of topics to be covered, he gave us memorable stories which will aid us in recalling the rules and regulations associated with carrying a handgun.
After the class, we headed to the range. I will not be winning any prizes for being the best shot, but I can protect myself and keep an assailant at bay.
The best part is the fun of shooting. We were on the range on a warm, sunny afternoon. I was shooting with colleagues, family members, and friends.
My husband and I have decided to take up shooting as a hobby. It is something fun we can do together that will get us outdoors and get me more familiar with my gun.
If you aren’t from Texas, you may be thinking of old Westerns with dusty roads and lawlessness. Texas isn’t like that or at least not in my part of the state. We are used to needing to protect ourselves when out in a pasture and running upon a wild hog or other danger. We also have a lot of hunters. It is just part of our culture.
If you are new to guns, my best advise is to select a gun that fits your hand and your needs. It is important that the grip of the gun feels natural and comfortable in your hand. My hands are small and my fingers short; so short that I can’t correctly fire some hand guns. Go to a gun show or store and hold the guns you are interested in. Talk to the clerk about your needs, for example self defense or sport. Choose your gun wisely so that you can enjoy it for years to come.
Ladies, if you are like me, you will want a pretty gun. If you haven’t checked out the array of colored, etched and custom hand guns, look on the Internet for an idea of what is out there. I have my eye on the blue Sig Sauer P238. It is appealing without looking like a toy.
You definitely need to know the laws that regulate gun use in your state. In Texas, we have open carry and concealed carry, each with their own set of laws.
Make sure you are comfortable with your gun: how to fire it, load it, field strip it, and clean it. If you are lacking confidence in your gun skills, do not carry it on your person or rely on it for self defense, unless in an emergency. You need to practice in all sorts of conditions so that you know your way around the gun. This includes knowing how to handle your hand gun in the dark. Bad guys often strike at night.
But the absolute most important thing is that you secure your firearms when not in use. In particular, if you have children or elderly in your home you must lock your guns away when not in use. That said, be able to access it quickly in an emergency situation. Every second counts when your security alarm sounds in response to a door being kicked in. Never assume that your guns are unloaded, even if you know they are. Handle them just like you do when they are loaded. These are good behaviors to model for your family.
So to all my gun toting friends, happy hunting, good shooting, and may you have perfect aim! See you on the range.