Several weeks ago, my son Luke exercised his second amendment rights and bought a rifle. A long-barreled bolt action .22 or something like that. (I hope that’s correct, I know nothing about guns.) On Saturday Luke, Ariel, Jacob, and Matthew went to a friend’s house to go shooting and to sight Luke’s rifle. The friend’s family owns a large farm. I asked Luke if such a thing was legal. Luke said, “Mom, he lives in Dade County.” Dade County, GA, has an unofficial motto, “Every man does what is right in his own eyes.” (But this post isn’t about libertarian politics. Or about the fact that current political debate is about whether a person should be allowed to carry a concealed weapon into a bar. To my West Coast born self, it seems like a no-brainer. But...) Anyway the kids all shot Luke’s rifle—no animals were injured—they shot flip targets. Even Ariel loved it.
Of course, then came the what-shall-we-do-now. What tops the scent of gun powder? Spelunking. Chattanooga area is littered with caves. In fact, two people died this week while caving—they fell into an underground river. (Thankfully, I didn’t know this and I didn’t know they were going caving until after they did.) Of course, they loved caving. Rappelling into the deep blackness. I’ve been told they didn’t actually rappel. Whatever. I call ‘em like I see ‘em. So, they rappelled into the cave. Matt actually sat on someone’s head in the process. But once they got inside the cave it was amazing (so I’m told). It had three rooms. With stalactites and stalagmites. A dead animal described as a “furry snake.” And Jacob claims to have seen real bat guano. Though that is a disputed fact.
Some of you may be wondering what my response was to these exploits. At first, I did the traditional mother “Oh, my, was that safe?” Until Calvin said, “How can you say that? They get it from you.” When I was a teenager, I lived in Hawaii and I actually caught and rode a sea turtle. I’m also an “adventurous” skier. Since Cal had a point, I laid aside the faux worry and said, “Wow. How cool! Next time, I’m totally coming with you.”