This (now vintage) Browning 7.65mm handgun, owned by my (then) husband, does not exist anymore. Of course not. In Canada we have a strict gun control system, which after years of investing large amounts of government funds into the registration of all guns, including long rifles, finally relented on the hunting rifles category. Following lots of opposition. In Alberta for example, we go hunting for meat each winter during hunting season. I myself having spent 27 years in Alberta in the Foothills of the Rockies, did go hunting in winter. [More on this – all of which was legal during the season – in another post.]

The story of the handgun, however, is a different one. Its ‘journey’ around the world started in The Netherlands. In the approx. 1960s. The little handgun, a Browning caliber 7.65mm European model, here the .32 ACP [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.32_ACP ] belonged to my husband * who spent years in the Indonesian war theatre Koninklijke Marines Java/Indonesia long before I met him in the Netherlands. In fact, I got him with the handgun, 1967. Tough luck for me ! Because that gun was in the house. [NOTE. Don’t get uptight about that gun, because it is long gone – 1980s.] This here is the story about that blasted handgun which had followed me around the world.

I had left Holland in 1973. Personal and family circumstances. To start a one-year contract with UNESCO, BIE in Geneva, Switzerland. Also circumstantial is the fact that this gun could not be left behind in our house in Holland.** [Again not part of this story.]. So, I packed it up in my car when leaving The Netherlands in a very good location. During that time there was no European Union and open borders. There were strict border controls. I had to first travel to France, Paris, UNESCO HQ for a one-week introduction course. I got across that border. Then from Paris driving to Switzerland, to cross that border. My car was checked very thoroughly. But I got through. Nerve wrecking. In late 1974 returning from Geneva to my home town to leave my personal belongings with family. From there leaving Europe and to the United States, to start my graduate program at Syracuse University.

After my graduation from Syracuse University beginning of 1976, we decided to stay in North America and went up north to Canada. [My little son was with me all the time.] Well, eventually I got the Landed Immigrant visa for Canada and also a full time job here. My personal stuff was still with family in Europe, including that ‘blasted’ handgun. After couple of years in Canada I requested my books and other stuff to be sent over, which is possible when first arriving here as Landed Immigrant.

Opening up the big crate with all sorts of value less junk (which had cost me a fortune for shipping and was not worth it), what do I see ? The Browning handgun. Canada Customs had not checked nothing. Scary stuff ! How can I go to any authorities and turn this in ? This ain’t even my own gun. *

Using that stupid thing for target shooting behind the house in the country. Until somebody turned me in to the (ha, ha) RCMP. So, for my then long dead husband*, he passed away in Holland 1974, I was charged with illegal possession of a handgun. Went to court, in that little town, all those Natives staring at me (ANNIE GET YOUR GUN). I got unconditional discharge. RCMP took the gun. Where it is now, I do not care. What I learned from this story: Never take into custody anything like that because the gun’s owner being unstable and could not be trusted with such, just to have done him a favor. **

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