LIFE’S LESSONS Phil Hardman celebrates the passing-on of knowledge and has himself some fun!
This month’s article is a change from my usual hunting feature, but it’s very much a story I wanted to tell. I’ve been a long-term advocate of the benefits, and positive aspects of airgunning, but even I am still often surprised by just how amazing this sport truly is. I have made really good friends over the years; some I have met whilst out shooting, some in gunshops, and even some online, but it has also helped to strengthen bonds in the most unusual of places, and made me realise just how lucky I am.
My ex-wife, Jess, who long-term readers might remember from some of my early features, and I, have remained very good friends since our divorce. We have two children, Jack and Casey, and she has been step-mother to my eldest son, Chris, for almost 15 years. We divorced five years ago, life has moved on, she has a new partner, David, and together they have had two children of their own. This could seem like an awkward arrangement when it comes to my Sunday visits to see my kids, but it never really has been. We’ve all got along very well actually, to the benefit of everyone, particularly the kids. David is a keen fisherman, and I had never
“they aren’t the cheap and cheerful spring airguns he might have used as a teenager’’
Jack has always expressed an interest in hunting, but I have tried to delay him until he was a bit older and more physically and mentally developed, but he’s coming up 13 now, growing fast, and seems to be ready to begin that journey. Of course, he’s been raised around airguns, so he is no stranger to shooting them, but until now it’s all been for fun, and when it comes to hunting, things need to be taken a whole lot more seriously.
My daughter Casey had the option to join us, but declined, instead preferring to stay in the house with her mother and baby sister, but little Connor, decided he was better off outside with his daddy, David, his big brother, Jack, and Uncle Phil, and although he’s quite little still, we all agreed it was good for him to learn that guns are not toys.
We didn’t have much in the way of targets, just a couple of sheets of paper with dots drawn on
Fun-gunning is … well, fun!
Not your typical back-garden plinker, but I don’t think it minded.