I have to bribe my son to come home from college

I suppose I should have expected it, but I’ve found myself feeling a bit hurt that I need to bribe my son to come home from college for the weekends. And that bribery is getting expensive.

My oldest son has gone off to college at the University of Wyoming, and I find myself missing him even more often than I thought I would. It’s great to have time alone with my younger son, which we didn’t get much of when Colby was still at home, but I still wish he’d come home more often.

When I do want to get the boy to come over the hill for the weekend, I have to bribe him. And it’s getting expensive. There are two things he can be bribed with — riding horses and shooting guns. The horse thing is normally fairly inexpensive, but I did have to go out and find a new horse that would be more reliable than the one I had, and good horses aren’t cheap.

And then there’s the shooting. Not long ago, we could have spent a good amount of time plinking targets and tin cans with the .223s with about a hundred bucks of ammo. It wasn’t unusual to buy good .223 or 5.56 in bulk for less than a quarter a round. Sometimes you could even get that per-round cost down to 20 or even 10 cents.

But that’s not the case anymore. You’re lucky to find it for less than a dollar a round — and higher calibers are generally 25 to 40 bucks a box, unless you’re willing to put unreliable rounds through your guns. To get the decent prices on ammo, you need to buy it in bulk, and then the total cost is staggering. The good news is that you have plenty of ammo you can use for multiple plinking sessions, but the bad news is that you just about have to sell a kidney to afford it.

So I might not be able to lure the boy home from over the hill very often. I’m running low on plinking ammo, and I’m not ready to part with either of my kidneys just yet.