Recently, I was returning alone from an out of town trip with a medium size enclosed cargo trailer in tow behind my pick-up. Since the economy has turned sour there has been an increase in crime in our state, and I had decided to take my HK P7 along for company. As allowed by state law, it rode beside me in the center console. Just after dark, I pulled off the interstate and proceeded to make the ten-mile drive to the small town where I live.
This stretch of road is mostly rural with some light industry mixed in between pastures and wooded areas. At that time in the evening there was little traffic going either way. As I approached a lonely intersection, the traffic light changed to red and I prepared to stop. After a check of my side view mirrors, it appeared that I would be the only vehicle at the intersection. It was then that my situational awareness level went to hi alert. I quickly began to assess the upcoming area to determine whether I could detect anyone hiding in the dark woods and high bushes bordering the side of the road that I was on. Then as I rolled to a stop, I confirmed the location of my P7, it was in its holster and ready if needed.
Suddenly, I detected a quick movement in the driver’s side view mirror. My heart raced. Then my eyes focused to see a figure of a man, lit only by my brake lights, running up from behind. Trying to stay calm, I quickly grabbed the P7. By the time the man reached my side window, I had turned in my seat and was holding my gun in the low ready position. I could see his hands were empty as he tapped on the window and loudly declared that one of my trailer doors was wide open. At that moment the light changed to green, so I cracked the window and thanked the young man then drove away to find a safe place to pull over and secure the trailer door. As I passed through the intersection, I returned the P7 back to its travel position. Only known to me, it had done its job well.
In reflection, having a means to protect myself had given me confidence in that sudden scary moment. This confidence and familiarity with my weapon allowed me to react in a controlled manner; I kept my cool.