Kellie Elmore's prompt this week for Free Write Friday was "Up shit creek without a paddle." Oh I have been on that creek numerous times. Here is one of my journeys on that damn creek.
Kids are curious. It is a fact, a blessing, a curse. I remember so many times my curiosity got me into trouble. This episode was one I thought I would take to the grave, but somehow the beans got spilled by one of my comrades in mischief.
I lived in the country in a farming community surrounded by fields and tobacco barns. I had so much fun roaming the woods, but it was a real treat when I got to go into "town" to spend the day with a friend. On this particular day it was my friend Brenda, my youngest sister Debby and I that found ourselves in trouble.
Brenda lived in a small apartment behind a grocery store. I thought she lived in the most amazing place. There was only a brick wall between her and heaven. Well, it was heaven to me. The place where shelves held candy and freezers held ice cream.
I don't know how it happened but the three of us were alone in Brenda's apartment that day. As kids will do we found trouble without looking very far. We found it in the ceiling. Brenda told us there were all sorts of treasures in her attic, but she was never allowed to climb up and explore it. Ah the magic word, never. What child can resist the temptation of doing something that has attached to it the word never.
Brenda knew exactly where the ladder was located that would take us up to that place of wonders. The details are a little sketchy after all these years, but I think Brenda had made her way into the attic and I was to climb up next leaving Debby to follow me. I made me ascent fine, got my instructions to only step on the beams when disaster struck. I stepped onto a ceiling tile and tore a whole right through it. With that step I unleashed an avalanche of metal. I really don't know what the metal was, but it lay lay alligator teeth on the floor below me. With a whoosh of metal and soot I was left hanging for my life from the beam I managed to grab before I hit the floor.
With tears, pushing, and screaming I was able to extricate myself from the beam and make my way down the ladder. The three of us stood looking at one another with terror. We knew we were in big trouble and up that proverbial creek without a paddle. The only plan we could make was to bolt for the door and run as far and as fast as we could. Luckily my mother's friend Viola lived a mile outside of town so we didn't have to run too far. As we walked that dusty road we made a vow we would never tell what happened. My mother was actually visiting Viola that day. It took all our acting skills to pretend nothing was wrong. .
As luck would have it we managed to dodge the bullet of exposure by Brenda's uncle taking the blame. He was an alcoholic and when her parents discovered the mess he was the perfect person to blame. He denied it of course, but our lips were sealed. The place was a mess with metal littering the kitchen floor and soot covering everything. The only blessing was the entire place got a much needed makeover.
Brenda was actually the one who revealed our secret. How and why are fuzzy details to me, but my mother found out about it. It was years after the fact and the three of us were grown women. My mother didn't say much. She just said we had been brats. Of course I must agree. It seems funny now, but for years it was the stuff of nightmares and one of many times I was up shit creek without a paddle.