16 March 2010

packing on a road trip.

Originally uploaded by Luna Soledad
So, this coming weekend I am hitting the open road, the great wide yonder, running for the hills, gettin' the heck outta dodge, blowing this Popsicle stand, and I'm not gonna let the door hit me in the ass... W00t. Yes, a getaway is long overdue as is a visit with my sister, so I decided to head out to Kentucky to remedy that.

I've always enjoyed the peace and solitude of the open road and have always been one for road trips. I especially love driving through the mountains of the Blue Ridge Parkway with its fresh rolling hills and lovely panoramic landscapes; a salve to the spirit. Sigh.

Well, probably not this time. Might as well forget the audio books too. Because this trip I am not traveling alone and I suspect that my three year old co-pilot will talk for the entire 12 hour journey... each way. Should be fun!

In any case, a girl's gotta be prepared when traveling long distances with a little man who still sleeps in a pull-up, so yes, when I travel, I'm usually packin'. That's right.

FYI: In the state of North Carolina, one must acquire a permit to purchase a firearm, however there are no ownership permits nor permits to carry, unless you carry concealed. It also is perfectly legal to wear a firearm if a) it is worn in plain sight, or b) one has a conceal-carry permit. Of course, in both instances this excludes running about brandishing your weapon and/or carrying it into places that have signs posted prohibiting guns, such as (duh) a bank. You may also drive with a gun in your car so long as it is in plain sight and you have enough common sense to declare it and keep your hands visible should you be pulled over by law enforcement. (They don't really like surprises.)

Since I'll be driving through Tennessee to reach Kentucky, I decided to check the state's gun laws so I called the Tennessee Department of Gun Something-or-Other... I had assumed that neighboring southern states would have similar agendas. Silly me.

The gun-officer-person tells me that Tennessee honors gun permits from all states.
"So what if my state does not issue gun permits?" I ask.
He tells me that without a permit, then I would need to store the gun separately in the car from its ammo. Well that's helpful.

"You mean to tell me that you honor all states' gun permits but because North Carolina does not require a permit to own nor carry that I am not allowed to carry a loaded gun in my car if I'm driving alone across three states with a toddler? What do you expect me to do with an unloaded gun? Throw it at somebody?"

He tries to explain again as if repeating himself will somehow enlighten me. Uhm, okay. I politely thank him and tell him that I'll take my chances.

I mean, come on. We've all seen Deliverance.

(Let me just take this opportunity to point out that the great state of "Agriculture and Commerce" is also the same state that has the Road Kill Bill. No kidding. --Hey, waste not, want not. Right?)

So Tennessee, I am putting you on notice: I will be illegally carrying, in my car, a loaded revolver through your state this weekend for my own protection.

"I believe everybody in the world should have guns. Citizens should have bazookas and rocket launchers too. I believe that all citizens should have their weapons of choice. However, I also believe that only I should have the ammunition. Because frankly, I wouldn't trust the rest of the goobers with anything more dangerous than string."

...Scott Adams

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