Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Grrr! (01/28/10)
TITLE: A LICK OF SENSE
By Ruth Brown
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We started as neighbors and became fast friends
It was summer in the 'burbs', the neighborhood was safe, and our kids ran free.
The second round of coffee was poured. We looked at each other knowingly. Silence no laughter, no shouts no screams, where were they, and what were they up to?
I scanned the empty back yard and joined Marilyn at the front door. I spotted a familiar blond head and blue shirt. He headed over the hill in front of my house.
“Mikey, Stop!” He kept right on going. We trailed him in search of the other absentees.
The neighborhood gaggle had surrounded the 'Big Hole', a six foot deep abyss. We surmised it was an unfinished storm drain. The removable grate was missing.
My heart thumped in my throat, my child cried and pointed in the hole. What if one of our kids is down there hurt... or worse?
The kids parted and I saw the problem. Relief, Thank you Lord. Matt's little, red, ride-on truck teetered on the grate about six feet down.
Marilyn swooped him into her arms and murmured, “Don't cry honey, I'll go in and get it for you.”
She's a sucker for stray cats and crying kids, sometimes at the expense of all good sense.
“I don't think it's a good idea, you'll never get out.”
“Ha, I'll take that dare.”
“It's not a dare, You couldn't pay me enough. Lets get a ladder..”
Grrr! It was too late. Marilyn's lower body had disappeared.
“You're lucky it's not muddy down there.”
The car rose from the hole, pushed by her long arm.
”Here Myrt. Take it.”
I inched over and grabbed the truck.
“Matt, here's your car not a scratch on it. Take it far away from here.”
Cheers rang out, the kids deserted us, and pushed Matt down the street.
Marilyn spread her arms out chicken fashion to gain the leverage to lift herself out,
but it was no go. Then she tried to walk her feet up the side, to no avail.
I took her hands and tugged but we were too near in weight. Our hands slid loose. I landed hard on my backside and began to titter, then she began to chuckle, we laughed so hard I feared she'd fall off the grate and get hurt.
“Are you alright. “
“Do I look alright? I'm in a hole here.”
Her head was all I could see.
The talking head's voice was flippant with a hint of fear. She raised a hand to her eyes to look for something to help. She spotted a familiar car coming toward us..
“I think that's Dad. Flag him down.” She flailed her arms above her floating head.
I waved one arm and pointed in the hole with the other.
“Jim, Marilyn's in the hole! Jim..”
We caught his attention alright. He pulled over, got out, and stomped up the hill.
“Grr! Marilyn, I do not have time for this nonsense. What have you gotten into?
If I had a child with a lick of sense....It could only happen to you!”
Jim, braced himself, grabbed her hands, and jerked his, thirty something, daughter out of the hole.
Marilyn landed with a thud, and brushed the dirt from her jeans, “Thanks Dad,” she yelled at his disappearing back.
Jim fled down the hill, shaking his head, and muttering,”Grr that girl will never grow up.”
Jim was right. She never will.
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