It was not a good sleep-night; the rain kept waking us up. I never heard the alarm go off at 5:30, but Jeanne did and pushed me out of bed.
The plan for the day was to meet an old friend, Arnie, for breakfast before Ryan and I headed for the shooting range. We left the coach at 6:30 in the dark and rain hard. The shooting outlook looked grim, but we would see what it was like after breakfast.
We met Arnie at I-HOP in Valencia. Here’s the backstory: After finishing graduate school, I worked as a corporate financial analyst for the school bussing division of ARA Services. With over 5,000 busses servicing contracts in about 30 states, it was no small outfit. Arnie was the controller for the Western Region, the largest region in the company. I quickly grew to respect Arnie for his professionalism, work ethic and accounting skill. We managed to keep in touch over the years and today was a good opportunity for us to catch up on old times.
Over coffee and scrambled eggs we talked for about an hour and I was glad to hear that overall, things are going well for Arnie and his family. He is especially proud of his kids, both of whom attended good schools and are just starting their working careers. Before departing I wished him and his family well.
After picking up a box of .22 caliber ammo at Walmart, Ryan and I decided to chance the rain and head for the Angeles Shooting Range. It was lightly raining when we arrived but the awning would keep us dry enough to shoot. Except for the 20 California Highway Patrol officers taking target practice, we had the place to ourselves. Over the next three hours, Ryan improved his skill by moving to increasingly harder targets. He started with pistol silhouettes, which look about the size of a garage door through the scope. When he was able to consistently hit the farthest pistol silhouettes, we moved to the 100 yard range and began picking off pieces of clay targets laying against the hillside. Some of the pieces were less than three inches across. Not bad shooting for a first-timer! About noon we had had enough and headed for home. Not long after merging onto I-5, Ryan was sound asleep.
Ryan gave Jeanne a full report when we arrived at the coach. After stowing the gear and dropping off Ryan, we headed to town for an early dinner. The rest of the evening was spent quietly at the coach.