On Sunday morning my dad and I decided to go to the park of culture.
“I haven’t been there for a thousand years,” said my father, “the last time, I remember, my mother and I went there. In the first year. First, I rode her on a boat, and then in a cafe I treated her to a chocolate ice cream.
- If my memory serves me, - said my mother, - I mostly rode you on the boat. As soon as we pushed off the shore, it turned out that you absolutely do not know how to row. And the ice cream, and I remember that absolutely, was not chocolate at all, but ordinary creamy.
“Who among us didn’t know how to row, we will not specify for pedagogical reasons,” said Dad. - As for the ice cream, it seems that it really was creamy, but with chocolate gravy.
“Whatever gravy it’s with,” Mom said, “dinner will be ready by three. Please don’t be late.
… Oh, and we had a great rest that day! They swayed on the swing, and spun on the merry-go-round, and ate ice cream. And when they walked to the exit, dad, nodding at a wooden pavilion with a bright sign, as if casually said:
- Shouldn’t we go to the shooting range?
I had never been to a shooting range before, and I shouted with all my might:
- Of course, come in! That’s great! Hooray!
“Indeed,” said the Pope, “why shouldn’t two still old men experience the accuracy of the eye and the firmness of the hand in such an accessible way?
The pavilion was empty. An uncle in a canvas cap sat behind a wooden barrier. In front of him was a newspaper with a crossword puzzle, and on the newspaper was a can of sauerkraut. In his left hand he held a fork, and in his right a chemical pencil.
“Good day,” Dad said. - Will you give us, my dear, six bullets? Three per brother.
“Eighteen kopecks,” said my uncle. - An island in the Aegean Sea of four letters, the second is “p”, - and, without looking up from the crossword puzzle, handed us exactly six balls shiny with oil.
- Everyone makes three shots, - said the dad, - who won, that fellow.
- Who isn’t? I asked.
- And who is not, that cucumber. By the way, have you ever fired from the oven?
“No,” I admitted honestly.
- This is not for you to slingshot on the glass. There’s a whole system here, brother. Now I will explain everything to you, and you remember. First, you break the barrel, then insert the bullet into it, then retract the barrel to its previous position. After that, you rest your elbow on the barrier, combine the front sight with the slot of the aiming bar and smoothly pull the trigger. Cut off?
- Cut off.
- So that’s great. How have your guns been shot? - he turned to his uncle.
“In the center,” my uncle muttered, “seventeen down. Hungarian painter.
- The central, therefore, battle, - explained the Pope, - and then there are still under the bleed. Okay, let’s go. Shooting that duck. And you?
- And I’m in the mill.
- Eh, - dad grunted, - where are my seventeen years? - and pressed the hook. The bullet bounced off the ceiling and hit the jar of cabbage.
- Six along, - said my uncle, - extreme infatuation with something.
- The mechanism is stuck, - explained the dad, - nothing, it happens.
I closed my left eye. The gun was heavy and swayed up and down. When it stopped for a moment, I pulled the hook with all my might. The wings of the mill turned in one direction several times, and then quickly turned in the opposite direction.
- Accident, - said dad, looking sideways in my direction, - real skill comes over the years. See the rhino?
“I see,” I said.
“You won’t see it again,” dad promised, and tore the baseboard to smithereens.
And I, aiming properly, hit the African elephant.
“A coincidence,” said Dad, “but there are inclinations.
- “Ventriloquism” as it is written? My uncle asked, spitting on the tip of his pencil.
- Do not speak by the arm, - dad was angry, - to aim, you know, they won’t let you. Shooting down the plane! Tube two. Sight zero.
- Get down! - shouted my uncle and threw himself on the floor, but in vain, because the bullet hit the side of the light bulb.
- Dad, can I try on a plane? I asked.
- Go ahead, - dad agreed, - only you won’t hit him in your life. If I couldn’t …
Before he could finish, the plane was already sliding down the taut wire.
“This is no longer a coincidence,” said my uncle. “It’s already a habit. Well done boy! Will you continue?
“Sorry,” Dad said with dignity, “but they are expecting us for dinner. By fifteen, zero-zero. And accuracy, as you know, is the courtesy of kings. So all the best.
- Happen, - uncle nodded, - twelve along. Indian polar explorer.