Not enough people talk about religion or politics - to maintain the calm it is easier to smile pleasantly and be a bit vague about your opinion. That is a result of lack of civility in conversation, because 'everyone knows...' Not cowardly but prudent. Or am I just making excuses?
I went to Battle Ground to the school house early Saturday morning and met men and women that are making a difference, really. I know, they aren't on any red carpet, in the news and if they were making a difference it would be noted. And it is, just your senses have been dulled by electronic information overload and you have difficulty finding out about them. Okay, just type in: http://appleseedinfo.org/ or hit this link Appleseed Information. Everything you need to know about them is through that page. The map of the United States on the right of the page will zoom you to where you can find Appleseed Events in the state you selected, and a link so you could sign up for the two day rifle marksmanship, history and heritage event. Your rifle, with sling, 500 rounds and sixty dollars to find out if you 'know very much what you are about'.
Could say I went to encourage the youngsters to carry on, to get the word out, to meet new folks on the trail, to see some I hadn't seen for awhile at any range. But then some of them are a bit older than I, so youngster doesn't fit. What they all are is dedicated and determined to make America a nation of Riflemen again. To tell the story of April 19, 1775, to honor the heritage of the men and women of peaceful colonial towns exercising their rights being rudely suppressed by violent undisciplined military action. A people that knew they could govern themselves better than someone far off that didn't care about them and certain unalienable rights. I do so love to read and study and then share about them, for we should be just like them and attuned to the love of Liberty. Are we?
First thing, get out of my Caravan and greet the first person I see that I don't know - Colycat - introduce myself, shake his hand and give him one of my new business cards. I would be spreading them around all morning. I am not really well known enough not to need the card, haven't made enough of a difference yet, although since lots of these people, that didn't need my card, had strong opinions of my value and are looking forward to working with me on the trail, on different ranges and dates. I hope.
Twenty-one total participants. Instructor Boot Camp, is about stirring the mind, spirit and preparing for another great year of sharing our best with those people committing to participate in the rifle marksmanship clinic and hearing the history. Colycat was laid back Passionate about the mission, I would dislike shooting Known Distance against him - he has the fire, probably shoots very well, but is humble enough not to rub it in, not without a lot of smiling. Kind of 'just glad we could do this together'.
He had a checklist of things he wanted done, schedule of when it should be done, and goals to emphasize for our presentations and instruction. Ben and Flipper brought a bunch of food, Tionico had his coffee making perfection and always happy to share it. Spent hours talking with him after the first day before we headed off to sleep at eleven. I slept in the school, that sleeping bag is the best investment I made in Germany, bought it for German winters but it works internationally. Got it about 1984, and been using it ever since. Tionico slept in his van, better mattress system than the one I use.
First day was about instruction in Prone and Sitting, steady hold factors and Natural Point of Aim, slings and presentation techniques. And Kenjo presented very well the 1907 leather sling, keeping it very simple, he used the same fine little green book I recommend.
The second day would be about the telling of the history, Nero had a great ten minute outline about the people that started the country and the two reasons they came to colonize - and why that was all the difference. Then we told the three strikes of the match, the dangerous olde men stories and American Amazon gave her version of the wedding that never was. I couldn't get as good with the Third Strike of the Match, and crept into the Benediction a bit. Colycat got up to do that, as he listened to my long standing complaint about the name of the closing call to Liberty... I know the need for the closure, the call for volunteers and supporters, and to leave a good feeling. A suggestion was to name it 'A Call to Acton', and I like that, have to build that link in mine and that would be very appropriate - what stirred Isaac Davis to lead, train and equip his minuteman company - what set him on the course of History saying 'I have not a man that is afraid to go.' offering their commitment to be the first in the march, to lead, to be the ones first engaged? What was it? It was a great difference to be stepping out to be the one, he made a difference that I talk about still today.
I was asked to find a citation for the written in dispatches about Death on a Pale Horse. My portable library was a hit, should make a bibliography of the readings I recommend for study of the Revolutionary War story telling. We already have more than we can tell in two days, but the hunger to hear it is out there and I should start building some relationships to perform Libertyseeds for the non-shooters. Yep, don't have too much time to start making a difference.