I arrived in the USA about two weeks ago and so far it has been good. This weekend I have been camping: I got a couple of ticks and a lot of mosquito bites, and someone let me drive their Ford Mustang….which was nice.
Also this weekend we partook of that popular American tradition of going to garage sales. For those not familiar, a garage sale (also known as a yard sale or a rummage sale) consists of collecting everything you don’t want/need anymore onto tables in your garage/driveway/front yard, putting more or less reasonable prices on them, and then waiting for people to come and buy it. We must have gone to 15. We managed to find a few bits of stuff we liked, mostly priced between .25 cents and 3 dollars. I found a wood working plane and some saw horse brackets, and there was some kitchen stuff.
At one place which was more of a barn than a garage, I was wandering around looking at tables of rusted screwdrivers and things when I came across a table of guns. I wasn’t expecting to see this, and from what other people said it is not a normal thing to see at a garage sale. There were a couple of BB guns, a 12 bore shotgun, a 20 bore shotgun with a second rifled barrel, and a .243. The shotguns were of a good make and the rifle was a Savage. I don’t remember what all the prices were, but the 20 bore was priced at $300. The guns didn’t appear to be in particularly good condition, they had surface rust on the barrels and the woodwork was worn. The shotguns were a good make, but I didn’t think that would justify the price considering the outward condition, you have got to wonder what the insides look like.
There was also some ammunition on sale, boxes of shotgun shells for $5 a box, two boxes of loose .32 & .22LR. I was in a large shop the other day where I saw some ammunition (stacked on the shelves like loaves of bread, some things will take more getting used to than others), and they were selling 12bore no. 7.5 shot for just under $6 a box, so I wasn’t going to buy what looked like vintage ammunition for almost that. I ended up buying a ‘Skill’ jigsaw for $5, but I made sure it worked first.
So far as I know my guns are still in a warehouse somewhere in the UK with the rest of our stuff. I think I will wait till they get here and I have a better idea what I am going to be doing before I let myself get tempted by garage sale guns.
Since I wrote this post I have visited a large superstore and seen the same brand of 20 bore with the same accessories in brand new condition for less than $300. I am vindicated in my skepticism. Also since I wrote that post, I have been to a much better garage sale where we bought a pair of goofy side tables for $6.
Just because it is being sold in a garage sale doesn’t mean it is cheap.