Baboon Pirates

Scribbles and Scrawls from an unrepentant swashbuckling primate.

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Location: Texas, United States

Friday, June 01, 2012

GiGi's Heater

One From The Memory Vaults

My maternal grandmother (GiGi) has been gone for a decade now, but rarely does a day go by when I don't think about her. Man, she was a tough old bird...

After my grandfather died in the early 1970's, she picked up and moved to sunny Florida, and took over as the manager of a retirement hotel in Hollywood, FL.

I really need to ask Mom how she got the gig. I knew she was a nurse for years & years, but obviously she had a diverse skill set.

We'd go visit GiGi most summers while she lived there. It was a great time to be a youngun, just blocks from the beach, and having all summer long to explore the gator farms, watch wrasslin' at the local arena, and get toasty brown on the sand.

The only fly in the ointment was Pierre. Pierre was Gigi's shit-colored poodle, and that dog hated me. The feeling was mutual.

Anyway, one day Gigi sent me to her suite for a pack of cigarettes (Vantage, with the blue bullseye logo) out of her desk drawer. I hated to go in there without her or my parents, for fear that damned poodle would take a chunk out of my ass.

So, I tiptoe into the room, and that dog commenced to growling at me. I sidled over to the desk, and tried feeling inside the drawer while leaning over the desk, keeping as much of it in between me and that demonic poodle.

Naturally, all I accomplished was pushing the carton further back inside the drawer. So, I dashed around, yanked out the drawer, and revealed a hidden surprise...

GiGi had a pistol!! Who knew??

I didn't know what it was back then, but it was a Smith & Wesson Model 61, the 'Escort'. A tiny little 6 shot .22LR autoloader. Functionally it's almost identical to the S&W 2214 I owned a few years ago.

I wasn't foolish, I knew I was supposed to leave it alone. Or, at least leave the trigger alone.

Yeah, I contemplated shooting that dog... I think the dog knew it, too. Pierre kept his distance, and an uneasy d├ętente existed for the remainder of the summer.

I wonder what happened to that pistol? I imagine she left it in Florida with the new manager. I might ask Mom & my uncle at the upcoming reunion!