We live in a country where shooting guns is considered uncommon, unless you are the estates gamekeeper, in the army or a criminal intent on blagging a bookies or a bank with a bit of armed robbery. It just so happens we’re on a break in Poland where, certainly for the tourist crowds, shooting guns is normal, so we’re giving it both barrels and gaining some instant macho swagger by shooting guns in Krakow.
Strangely enough, you even get the chance to pick your weapons of choice. This may sound weird but we’ve gone for a custom package and I’ve picked my favourites, or certainly ones that have I’ve heard of. Everything you’ve heard of in Call of Duty seems to be in their weapons armoury.
Of course, it’s all in a controlled environment, we’re not nutjobs on a rampage or gun toting gangsters, but I don’t know if its more scary that I still want to shoot a gun or that I still know the muzzle velocity of the ones I have fired. We’ve got a selection of weapons at our disposal and its time to cock the Glock and take some shots.
Growing up as a child in the 70s and 80s in the cold war paranoia of a decadent western government, the temptation to pick the Belgian FN FAL, the so called right arm of the free world, and the very first weapon I ever held and fired in the RAF, is tempting for the sake of nostalgia. Instead we’ve picked the iconic, for all the wrong reason, Kalashnikov AK47. Adorned on country flags, adopted by guerrilla groups, the main armament of 55 armies across the world and the very weapon that Ivan and his red Russian army would have attempted to stomp all over the western world with during those MAD days during the Cold War. Apparently cheap enough and plentiful enough that you can by for the same price as a pack of fags, I’m glad I don’t smoke.
I can’t think of many reasons why I’d need to spray six hundred rounds per minute from a sub-machine and lay down a large amount of suppressive fire. Unless that is, I was a killer robot from the future sent back in time to prevent the leader of the human resistance from being born. In that case, I’d be marching in to a gun shop in down town Los Angeles ordering an Uzi 9mm with a strong Austrian accent Terminator style. I’m not a cyborg assassin from the future but I’m having a go anyway and on full automatic. It takes about 1 second to expand my bullets on full auto and we both laughed, enjoying it a little too much.
I was 8 years old and it was the 4th May 1980, we were in London walking along Prince’s Gate. The very next day, we were huddled around the television in Didcot watching the news as the SAS exploded onto the scene as they stormed the Iranian Embassy. Any weapon that’s good enough for the SAS’s Counter Revolutionary Warfare wing to storm embassies has to be good enough for me. A Heckler and Koch MP5 to take a terrorist tango down. I took down the paper target in front of me with a mix of single aimed shots and burst of 3.
Then it’s on to an AR15 (M4) Carbine with an EOTech holographic sight, very Call of Duty, and then we had a blast with a Uzkon pump action shotgun.
Taking a break from the assault rifles and a rain of hot brass, we turn to handguns. I say handguns, but the next gun,a Ruger Redhawk, was more like a hand cannon. Seeing as this a 44 Magnum, the most powerful handgun in the world and would blow your head clean off, you’ve gotta ask yourself, do you feel lucky punk, well, do ya? Hell yes I do! That paper target positively quivered as Sam levelled the sights. It nearly knocked her out of her socks and sent her staggering back. Its got one hell of a kick and I swear there was a shockblast, it’s a huge chunk of metal and an absolute beast.
The iconic opening sequence of a tuxedo wearing , suave, debonair man, walks, suddenly turns towards the camera and then shoots, blood runs down the screen. Its not the man form the Milk Tray advert but the James Bond gun barrel sequence. Because of course, no self respecting British spy would be caught dead with a weapon that ruins the smooth lines of his suit, he’d wear something small that could be tucked away like a Walther PPK. Unfortunately this had broken so were given another choice and opted for a CZ P-10C pistol. Its the equivalent to a Glock 19 and known as the Glock killer and ended up being my most accurate grouping.
We’ve had a great time at Grotgun, the instructor was patient and helpful, showing us other weapons and helping where needed. A little strange for me not having to load the weapons or clean them though. It was a breeze to book online, we just turned up and everything was already for us. We expected to see stag do groups but only saw couples while we were there. You’re not allowed to take videos of photograph while shooting but can pose afterwards, even if we do look like a poor Dempsey and Makepeace, we’ve enjoyed shooting guns in Krakow, something a little different and certainly coming away with some instant macho swagger.