This would be the first large shoot I had done since Jeanie and I had been on the road together. I was glad that I had worked a smaller shoot first so I knew what to expect and could plan for the shoot.
I didn't take in any work while I was setting up and I gave myself 2 days to set up. Before I opened the doors on first day of the practice shoots ,I made 2 signs. one that said" I WILL NOT BE OPEN UNTIL 8AM. IF YOU NEED YOUR GUN BEFORE 8 AM PLEASE PICK IT UP NO LATER THAN 10PM THE NIGHT BEFORE." the second sign said"IF I AM HERE I AM OPEN IF I AM NOT HERE I AM CLOSED"
Skeet fields at National
I knew this was going to be a shock to some of the more demanding shooters but that was how it was going to be. I didn't have a lot of problems but a few shooters were unhappy with my new hours. Unless it was a very special shooter, special as in friend, I only took in fast high dollar jobs like installing new recoil pads. Adjustable combs,In stock recoil reducers and Barrel polishing.
Jeanie was being Jeanie, she was up and down vendors row meeting people and being a ray of sunshine. I set her up a corner in the Big tent and she had fun looking after the the tent sales.
She was a lot better than I was with the ladies who were just shopping. She just about doubled my candle and lotions sales. I bet you never thought of buying candles and lotions at a shoot did you.
Jeanie didn't know about all the shooting related items but she would drive up to the shop door and ask. The customers all love her wonderful personality and she saved me a million steps.
Not every day was a good day for her. If she had had a recent seizure or her Arthritis was bothering her, she usually stayed inside Jeane's Bottle which was parked just a few steps away.
I was already learning some very important lessons from Jeanie, I just was not aware of them yet. In that first 8 months that we were on the road together I learned what living life was really all about and how people try to convince themselves they are happy. Had it not been for Jeanie coming into my life, I would have done just exactly what I said I would do, fall over dead in that shop trailer.
For the first time that I could remember ,in my adult life , I was really enjoying life. My body did not hurt as bad and I enjoyed things that I had never seen before.... they had been there all the time. More on that later... back to the shoot.
I was not aware that seldom does it thunder in Orange County. We were about 1/2 way through the shoot when one of the Texas Spring thunderstorms with hail hit us. Jeanie was scared to death, I was trying my best to reassure her we were safe and that we would not be blown away by a Tornado. It was a pretty good thunderstorm with lots of thunder and lightning. The hail got up to about the size of a quarter but only broke one clearance light on Jeanie's Bottle.
Jeanie suffered the most damage, she had a seizure. After The wheelchair wreck on Halloween '94 she would usually have 1-2 seizures every month. I had been taught how to deal with them and what to do so she was never in any physical danger. The next day she said she had never been so scared in her life. This is Texas in the Spring and it was going to get worse but she handled each storm better.
The spring flowers were blooming more every day. After supper we would go for a walk and look at the flowers.
We loved to go set under this huge live oak tree and just enjoy nature, the birds, the flower and being together.
Tomorrow: winding down and packing up
I plan to have a great day, I hope you will Join Me