Started about 7 PM. Dug out the old 21 speed mountain bike, threw some lights, a kickstand, and a new bike lock on it to make it a bit more appropriate for the road, and headed out.
Road all around Gresham. Nobody noticed, nobody cared.
Was heading down Division at about 25mph and bit it pretty hard (and, oh yeah, couldn't remember where any of my safety gear was, of course). Was impressed that the only thing that went flying was my bluetooth earpiece. The holsters kept everything right where the belonged, and protected. Although I am pretty scratched and beat up.
Headed to the burger king at Division and Eastman to get a soda and clean up. Nobody noticed, nobody cared. One person asked if I was alright. Told him yup, just started riding again for the first time in a while and bit it.
Went out, road around some more. Stopped at the round table for dinner. Was there for maybe an hour. Got up to refill a drink. A young kid (maybe 8-10) approached me and said that he and his dad were wondering if the gun was real. I told him it sure was. He said "thanks" and went back to report to his dad. Couldn't hear exactly what was said, but I got the impression from the body language that it was kinda an "That's cool/will take you out to the range someday when you're older" kind of talk. Heard mention of the word safe or safety. Maybe he's going to teach the kids gun safety? I thought about approaching them and offering to take them shooting, but I figured it would be too odd, so I just returned to my table and finished up.
Friend I was with went to the bathroom, told me he heard the guy from the table mention something about a gun to the female assistant manager.
Walked outside and the manager and one employee were smoking. Male asked me if it was real. Yup. I kinda asked him if anyone mentioned anything to them, said I didn't want to cause them any problems. They said nope. He asked me if I had a permit. Told him I did. He said he was thinking about getting one, but he has to turn 21 first. Score! Whole time, the female looked scared s***less. I started talking about the laws, and told him he could carry when he turned 18 (turned out he was 17), he just had to be careful about banned cities, public buildings, concealing by accident, and the like. Female started to relax. He mentions that he has a .38. She tries to cover for him. I just say, "Hey, I don't care. I'm not a cop and I support firearm ownership. As long as he's responsible with it, doesn't bother me in the slightest that the government doesn't think he's old enough. He can drive, after all, can't he?"
Then she mentioned that she'd like to own a firearm too, but her mental history (several involuntary commits) would prevent her... Alllll...righty then. Back to the guy, talk a bit more about what he can and can't do until he gets his permit, and what changes once he has it. Bid them their goodbyes (she's totally comfortable with me by now) and head back to the bike.
Out and about for a few more hours. No other notices or mentions.
All in all, a great ride. I feel like someone beat the crap out of me, (mostly) in a good way, and apparently quite a few people got to see a responsible non-police officer with a firearm, and might have even been encouraged/educated by it. Good night for OC in the City of Gresham.