I have more guns than I will admit. Well, the truth is I don't know how many I have. Counting guns just seems like a bad idea. Clearly you can't have to many, so why would you ever count them? Rest assured that for the most part they are all locked up inside a hardened steel box that weighs half a ton.
Anyway, I have guns of all actions and calibers. A gun for every critter or situation, and then a "Plan B" gun to back the primary up. I have "working" guns, and guns that lead a protected and cased life. Some guns get cleaned after every firing session, some get cleaned when they look like they need it.
I have guns for deer that are different from my black bear guns. I have a gun for ground hogs that I wouldn't even dream of shooting at a coon. And pistols...... let's not even go there. Ammo? Favorite brands, weights, and styles carefully sorted and sealed in surplus ammo cans.
Then there is my single shot shotgun. It's a New England Arms 12 gauge that I think Columbus brought over on the Mayflower (okay maybe not the Mayflower, but I've had it a long time). The single shot is in a garage utility room resting on two nails that I wrapped with duct tape. On a shelf under it is a box of shells from Walmart. I don't know what brand or shot size(probably 8), but I'm sure they were the cheapest shells they had. The door to the utility room isn't locked, if the gun is stolen I guess I'm out maybe forty bucks.
Last night as I was putting out the trash, my cat alerted on something in the yard. At first glace I thought it was a possum, but after a closer look I saw it was an armadillo. Maybe the same armadillo that has made a mess of my yard and flower beds. It goes without saying that the "possum on the half shell" had to go.
I grabbed my single shot and a round of the cheapest ammo Walmart sells and killed that armadillo. As I was putting the gun back up on the nails I couldn't help but think about the fact that the cheapest gun I own, is a primary go to gun.
After a little thought it came to me that my single shot shotgun has taken more variety of game than any gun I own. Crows, lord yes. Squirrels, who's counting? Snakes, the only good snake is a dead snake. Coyote, there is only one way out of the barn and I had it covered. Woodchuck, don't sun yourself on top of my wood pile. Huge mutt of a dog, he won't growl and scare my girls again. Coon, possum, a beaver (now that is a good story), a bat, and some other things I won't admit to.
So, for the first time ever, I cleaned my single shot shotgun today. I used steel wool to get some rust off (it's damp out there in the utility room). I even oiled it down. Then I put some fresh duct tape on the nails out there in the utility room and hung it back up. I figure in another 25 years I'll clean it again.