Friday, September 19, 2014

On duty ... again.

It's been a long week and I worked more than I should have but hey!  I rather be overworked than unemployed and there's always money at the end so that makes everything better.  Here's the Daytona Shelby shot outside the ER before my 8 hour shift began.  I noticed lately that it's getting darker quicker.  A few weeks ago the sun wouldn't go down until nearly 8pm, now it's getting dark a little after 7.  It also didn't help that it was overcast ... a lot, with heat lightning scattered all around and storm clouds moving through.

Friday I took the Daytona to the firing range to qualify with my Gen IV Glock 17 sidearm.  I took her down Columbia-Purvis Road, a serpentine twister (look it up on Google Maps, Columbia MS).  I had some wind in the sails, call it 65 to 70mph and I wasn't touching the brakes.  Then I came up on a Ford Focus, came up on him pretty quick, got to within two car lengths of him, thought I was going to have to really haul it down when he looks in his rear view mirror and floors it (as fast as a Ford Focus can be floored).  I don't know ... maybe he thought I was trying to steal his girlfriend (there was a girl in the passenger seat) or maybe he thought I was his girlfriend's ex-boyfriend or who knows but this Ford in front of me shot up to speed and then never let off.  I followed him, since he was now moving at the clip that I had been moving at before I had to haul it down to not run over him and we stayed that way for 2/3 of the drive.

The Daytona Shelby is a really good handling car, once you get used to the weight distribution and the fact that you're steering AND driving with the same set of wheels (which like I said in a previous post is a really funny feeling).  The Ford Focus ... eh, not so much.  I found that if I let him run out about four or five car lengths in front of me I could smile and occasionally chuckle when he would hit a curve beyond his capacity and have to hit the brakes, sometimes hard.  He'd ride the curve, sometimes crossing the center line to straighten the curve so he could make it and then he'd power out of the curve on the other end, as much as a Ford Focus can power out of a curve.


I just kept the Daytona in cruise in 5th gear at 65mph and drove.  By the time I got to the same curve that he had just struggled through all I had to do was cut the wheel a little and glide on through the curve, no fuss.  I guess this infuriated the Ford driver because he kept looking back to see how the Daytona would handle the curve and when I just hugged the outer line, one gloved hand on the wheel, not breaking a sweat at all it would only make him even more determined to, I don't know, prove himself to me?

I really didn't understand what was going on right then all I knew was I had someone trying to show off to me, in a Ford Focus, and he was having a really hard time doing it while I was just following him, listening to the Ipod through the Infinity II factory stereo system and having a good chuckle every now and then.

One curve was particularly bad and I thought he was going to lose it and slide off the road but after a bit of a hard scare on his part he made it through the curve and drove slow for about half a mile.  I guess his girlfriend or whoever the woman was in the passenger seat was chewing his ass out for showing out and almost wrapping them around a tree in the middle of a curve.

All told, I think I used the Daytona's brakes about four times on that road and only then because I was behind the star of Amateur Hour.  I wish I had thought to load the theme music from The Benny Hill Show ... that would have been the perfect driving music to watch this ass clown try to drive his Ford Focus like it was some kind of serious performance car.

Shortly before Purvis, the two of us came up on a slow moving pickup truck and we had to haul down.  Like I said, I don't know what this guy's problem was but he kept looking back at me in the rearview mirror and once the woman in the passenger seat turned around and looked at me.  I just smiled and kept looking straight ahead.  It was obvious that the guy was mad that he had come up on a slower moving vehicle because he kept trying to pass.  Now, understand that Columbia-Purvis Road isn't a good road to try to pass on, either so all this guy could do is slide to the left a little, see a hill or an oncoming bit of traffic and then slow down again as he took second place behind the truck in front of him.  He kept looking back in the rearview mirror like he owed me money and all I did was just stare at him and smile.

Eventually we came to a Y in the road and he took the left fork and I kept on going straight and that was the last that I saw of him.  I didn't even look at him as he peeled off.  It was a strange little road race but at least it kept the long drive from Columbia to Purvis interesting.

I got to Purvis, found the law enforcement firing range and spent the next eight hours in good company qualifying with my duty carry sidearm.  So much for my one day a week that I'm off but there are worse ways to spend your day off than busting caps on the range.

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