When I sent yesterday’s letter to A.M. Costa Rica, the editor wrote back and grilled me about owning a gun, asking if I was married to a tico, did I take the test, did I register the gun… yikes. I couldn’t figure out if he was against private citizens owning a gun or if I offended him in some way. Still don’t know… but here’s what I know about gun ownership.

You can have a gun here, either as a resident or through a corporation. You can buy here or import them. Importing is a HUGE pain in the butt, but do-able. Guns are registered here. That about covers my knowledge. Here’s what the experts have on the topic:

The Real Costa Rica’s page about firearms

We Love Costa Rica info (you have to join to read the articles here, but it’s free and simple to do, lots of good info on the site)

Costa Rica Link info

There is a shooting range here in San Jose, but we have never been. I don’t like guns. They just LOOK violent. And they are noisy. Ryan is not interested in shooting, bless his heart. But Mo and Xavier are gun-gho… they love shooting up stuff. And, when they can blow up stuff, that’s a slice of heaven. In fact, a few years ago they spent a week at the farm building a potato cannon, then firing stuff out of it. I thought it was a complete waste of time but they were ECSTATIC. Even Ryan got a kick out of that thing…

A couple of years ago, a business associate of Hal’s invited him to go to South America bird hunting. Apparently, South America is overrun with some bird that’s good to eat. At certain times of the year, hunters are encouraged to come there and keep the flock down.

Now, we aren’t hunters. Personally, I could never shoot an animal unless I was starving. But there are all levels of hunting. Hunting solely for sport is out. And those ridiculous "hunters" who set out a food trap, then shoot the animal when it comes to eat should be smacked upside the head and have their weapon confiscated. Morons.

As long as you are going to eat the animal, hunting is fine by me. I still couldn’t do it unless I were starving… But I eat hamburgers and somebody killed that cow. I try not to kid myself about it.

ANYWAY. Mo and Hal were considering the trip. Mo was pretty excited about it, but he had never shot a living creature. I wondered how the reality was going to settle in. As gun-loving and blow-up-stuff loving as he is… looking a creature in the eye and shooting it… Well, I had my doubts this was going to be all that much fun. And, ok, I was hoping he wouldn’t really enjoy it.

As fate would have it, a few weeks before the trip, Mo started volunteering at the bird sanctuary in Key West. You know, where you bring injured birds and the volunteers nurse them back to health? About a week after that, Mo told Hal he didn’t think he wanted to go bird hunting after all. I love it when the world turns like this!

So the boys all know how to lock and load, although the little boys (those 6′ giants I call my babies) don’t have access to the arsenal. And Hal won’t tell me where the bullets are. Smarter than he let’s on.

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