Posted: July 28, 2011 in Just Life

This morning I ventured into neighborhood number three pushing a baby buggy. We came across a field that had hundreds of dragonflies zooming around, which was fascinating and somehow a bit unsettling. I went from an awestruck mind frame to a more quickly paced let’s get out of here state of being.

We came to a hill steeper than my previous thigh mastering experience and knowing that all best houses our on top of hills I pushed upward.

To my surprise, I discovered a house surrounded by junk, a homemade chicken coop with actual chickens (not wearing diapers), and a tree buzzing so loud with insects that my elbows suddenly felt oddly vulnerable. It was also a dead end, not a fork in the road, but nowhere to go but back down. What the hell, this was not what I was expecting?

Staring down at the bottom of the hill reminded me of an experience I had at the age of seven. We lived in a tiny ass town in Missouri that had a very similar type of hill and at the top of that hill was the only library. One day after some begging, my mother agreed to take me to the library and looking back I now understand why reading a book might not be worth the climb.

It was like a mountain in my mind and it was hot. My mother, who was pushing my two year old sister in a beat up umbrella stroller, nothing like the luxury ride of today’s generation, was probably cursing me under her smile.

The library was awesome and I checked out my first Dr. Seuss book, Cat in the Hat.

On the way down, my mother asked me to hold on to the stroller while she tied her tennis shoes. I had the book propped on one of the stroller handles and took my hand off the other to turn the page when I heard my mother yelling at me. My sister was on the move.

Dr. Seuss and I took off down the hill after the stroller, running faster than my legs could even handle, I was afraid of falling, but more scared of what would happen to me if my mother caught up to us first.

Then it happened, the stroller at full speed hit the curb and toppled over into the grassy yard at the bottom. A second of silence and then my sister began to wail, my mother scooped her and the stroller up, and then gave me the eye, as I stood frozen, clutching the book.

Yes, my sister was fine and no, I did not get into trouble. Instead, I find myself thirty years later, standing at the top of a hill, with a death grip on my daughter’s stroller, Karma.

I take my time and start laughing to myself, as I wanted to do all those years ago, watching as my sister did a face plant in slow motion.

Now, you must be curious about whatever happened to that book or perhaps you think like any normal person would that it was returned, but in fact, I still own the damn thing. Yup, I don’t think my mom cared too much for another library adventure and we moved out of state a few months later.

If you are a library cop, just pretend I’m a writer making this crap up.


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