I'm staying at my folks place for a week while I move to another place, and my pops asked me to run to the store to get some "5 Hour Energy" (eww). Didn't feel like strapping up, so I tossed the pistol in my holster and placed it on the passenger seat covered by a laundry bag. Seeing all the mom and pops stores closed, and 7 Eleven packed, I drove to Manassas. There's an Exxon a little ways down where the clerk always appreciates me paying a visit (he was the first to suggest I buy a firearm). Pulling in, I take a look at the situation and decide it's best to park right in front of the store where the white lines tell me not to. Going inside, I see 5 hispanic men, and two black men eyeing each other--save it, I'm not a racist, but we have gang problems that don't involve whites in this town. I go to the back, grab a Dr. Pepper, and wait as I scan the room. Two more hispanics walk in and cut in line in front of me... I keep quiet (no knife, no gun, no luck). The black men (early twenties) wait in line and eventually just walk out without paying. My eyes make their way to the remaining men's hands to see "MS" tattooed (I'm sure most of you know, but that's MS as in Mara Salvatrucha, MS-13, growing in VA by the minute). I look outside to see that they are all gathering in front of my vehicle. I finally get to the counter, say hello to my clerk, and see they don't have what I came for. I walked out to hear the 7 gangsters "steppin'" at the two black guys. I had to walk between two of them to get out the door (remember my car is right outside), excuse myself with a "perdon", and make it to my car. I have to drive through where these guys are standing, necessitating a 'honk', so as soon as I get in, I lock the doors, reach under the laundry bag, and press check the .40 before giving the horn a tap. After a few dirty looks and some slow gangsta steps, I'm out. A mile up the same road, I stop at another Exxon and get the drinks. You wouldn't believe the difference you see driving only a mile in Manassas. A little bonus to the story, my cell phone is MIA, bad news.
Two things I learned:
1. I need to buy a folding knife
2. If gangstas cut in front of you, let them--especially if you're unarmed.
3. Tactical scenarios don't do you any good in that position, all I could have done if something went bad is break for the door, do a movie-style slide over my hood, and bail.
4. I need to buy a new cell phone tomorrow.
5. When you see gang tattoos, say "Why, what a lovely gesture!! Are those your boyfriend's initials?"
I got little nervous, and all that had happened was a little eye contact at the time. Never thought I'd be such a weakling without my piece! I wouldn't have thought about it twice before I started packin'.
Sorry about the long post, details are the only way I know how to tell stories.