Tuesday, January 02, 2007

thrill of entering this bigger world

So this week I’m going to try to juggle two things at once – should be easy – I’m a woman after all… insert wry smile here.

First will be to list two specific things one that made me smile and one that made me wince.

Next will be the normal exercise.

First off… Jay woke up this morning and is cuddling with me on the couch while I do my writing, which is making me smile. Dinner last night, I cooked spaghetti, sauce, and cheesy bread, very few of the children ate it, they insisted on making their own dinners and that made me wince.

Now the exercise, which is to take an event from life, write two sentences about the event. List the facts you know, list the facts you don’t know, then write a paragraph that uses both. This is to alleviate the need to stay too close to the facts when writing about things that are close to truth.

When I was about five years old I was climbing a tree with my brother and he fell out of the tree and broke his arm.

What I remember: the Brownells were there, we were in the woods near the house, the older kids called the tree the elevator tree because you could climb one tree, grab another tree and float down to the ground, I was in the tree, Tracey holding me after getting out of the tree, Mrs Brownell not wearing her shoes and driving

What I don’t remember: who else was there, climbing the tree, Steve falling, Getting out of the tree, needing help when I was in the tree, what time of year it was, if the fathers were there, the Brownell boy’s name. How we got to the woods. How we decided to go to the woods.

We had already finished our lunch of sloppy joes and mac-n-cheese. Mrs. Brownell and Mom were sitting with their coffee. Steve, Em, and Tracey were gunning for adventure. We called him Em, his name was Emory, but it never really seemed to fit that way. They were going to leave Robin and I behind. I’m sure they would have taken Robin if I hadn’t been there but I think they thought they were doing me a favor by leaving her behind for me to play with. Nothing doing. I wanted to go too. So did the moms, get us all outside and gone, out of their hair. So we left, Steve grumbling. He was leading us to a secret place and he didn’t want his kid sister along. There I was though, a permanent thorn in his side and destined today to become a bigger pain for him.

We trooped like a parade down the block, past the proud lawns of our Midwestern suburban neighborhood. Steve was in the lead, followed by Tracey, who was wearing the combined look of interest in this reportedly secret place while also quite obviously above all this adventure as the mature oldest of the group. Em was doing his best to be as determined about this adventure as Steve but he didn’t have the same enthusiasm, his was a more distracted sort of guy. Robin and I trotted after them, having to hop and jump a few times to keep up with the older ones bigger steps.

Then we were off the block, this wasn’t something I did much of, my world pretty much consisted of a five house diameter starting at my house, ending at my best friends house and including two of my arch rivals houses. Steve, however, ranged much further in the neighborhood, and the delicious thrill of entering this bigger world swelled in me. We continued our journey onto Sussex Street which was bordered on the east side by woods. We stole through a quiet looking house’s yard to the woods beyond and soon were tromping through the trees…

Time’s up and pencils down folks. Sorry but I’ve got to get to work…

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