Awkward Moments three, (the car in the tree)


English: 1996–1999 Toyota Corolla (AE101R) CSi...
English: 1996–1999 Toyota Corolla (AE101R) CSi sedan, photographed in Gordon, New South Wales, Australia. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Awkward Moments (part three, the car in the tree)


Two men rushed past me, their words gushing out in torrents.  Their conversation was entirely about something that was going on outside the store.  My curiosity piqued, I watched as they hurried through the grocery store’s front doors and joined others who seemed to be staring into the sky.  What was so interesting?  Was a plane in trouble?  Did they see a UFO? Was a major storm heading our way?


“I’ll be right back,” I said to my lady friend.  “I’ve got to see what the excitement is all about.”  I scampered outside, leaving her and two kids.


Stacey, her three kids, and I had traveled to the mountains for a picnic.  It was a beautiful hot day and we mostly stayed in the shade.  Her oldest son, Fabian, was hyperactive and constantly on the move.  He just couldn’t sit still during our picnic.


Fabian was too distracted by the world around him.  He wandered off several times and we had to search for him each time.  Out of frustration Stacey told him he was grounded and would have to stay next to her.  After an angry exchange of words between Stacey and Fabian, we decided to leave.   There was no point in staying with relations already strained between them and still going downhill.


On the way down the mountain Stacey decided to reward her other two children for being good.  She spotted a mini mall with a small store and asked me to stop. I pulled in.  I noted that the space was on an incline so I set the parking brake.


“Let’s go inside and get out of the heat,” I said.


“Fabian has to stay in the car. He’s grounded,” Stacey replied.


“I don’t want to leave him in the car.  I don’t want anything to happen to him.”


“He’ll be fine.  I don’t want to reward him for bad behavior.”


Reluctantly I went inside.  I picked up some potato chips, various kinds of candy, fruit drinks, and some ice cream. I didn’t tell Stacey but I intended to give some to Fabian later after he showed good behavior.  However, that was before I saw the men rushing out the door.


Once I was outside a strange sight greeted me.  A white Toyota Corolla, looking a lot like mine, was across the street, high in the air, surrounded by a gathering crowd.  I stared in amazement.  “It looks like my car but it can’t be.”  I turned and looked for my parking space.  It was empty.


The Toyota looked kind of odd resting in a tree.  Yes, it was my car, and no, it didn’t have magical powers.  How did it get there?


Stacey had rejoined me by then, two kids at her side.  She clutched my arm tightly. “Where’s Fabian?” she asked hysterically.


At that moment Fabian’s head popped up at the driver’s side window.  His face was pale and he looked terrified.  I couldn’t understand his words or his gestures. “Don’t move!” I shouted.


Traffic was blocked at the main entrance as emergency vehicles arrived.  Fabian was rescued first.  With no one else in danger everything went faster.  A helicopter lifted my car and then lowered it to the ground.


I was worried that this would be terribly expensive.  Then two representatives of the mall management team thrust a paper in front of me.  They were concerned the mall would be sued because a child had been in danger.  They were happy that I didn’t want to sue anyone.  Fabian was safe and that was all that really mattered.


I came to the conclusion that Fabian had released the parking brake, put the car in neutral and attempted to steer it.  Instead the car jumped over a small railing and sailed onto a tree which was between two lanes, one for entering and one for leaving.  Amazingly no one was hurt and my car received only a few small scratches.


Our relationship suffered because of the incident and shortly thereafter we broke up.  But that’s another story.




Belle Rides Shotgun

Female Lhasa Apso, seven years old in a pet clip.
Image via Wikipedia

She rode in the car with the wind in her face,

The passenger side was her favorite place,

When Belle pushed the button she always knew,

She’d have the wind, front seat, and a great view,


It takes more than the wind to make her grin,

An open window is just a place for her to begin,

She sees the world as she thinks it should be,

It’s nicer when everyone is happy, don’t you agree?


Belle and I were going shopping one afternoon,

It was one of those beautiful days in late June,

She rode with her head outside to enjoy the air,

The temperature was still rising but she didn’t care,


“Belle,” I said, “dogs aren’t allowed inside the mall,

We’ll get an ice cream cone and then go, that’s all,”

If one food is her favorite it might be ice cream,

I expected Belle to be excited, maybe even scream,


She struggled and fought for me to let her down,

Her expression had changed, now she wore a frown,

The pavement was burning on her little paws,

She was in rescue mode, she had a cause,


She dashed three rows away to a car shut tight,

The car looked empty, no one was in sight,

Belle was insistent, she refused to leave,

She was giving me a message, I chose to believe,


I got closer and much to my surprise,

Children were in there, I saw two sets of eyes,

Their faces were flushed, their condition was poor,

I had no time to think, I tugged at the door,


The door was locked and the children were afraid,

How could I get them out and into the cool shade?

I called 9-1-1 and waited for their parents to show,

Should I break a window? I didn’t quite know,


Belle was running in circles but didn’t go far,

Belle heard a siren and led the firemen to the car,

The children were rescued but Belle wouldn’t go,

She wanted to show me something, what I didn’t know,


One more time I listened to what she was trying to say,

On the floor was a blanket, within it a baby lay,

Before I could call for help a fireman was at my side,

He had seen me follow Belle, his eyes were open wide,


Their procedures were smooth and quickly carried out,

The two recovered quickly, the baby’s life was in doubt,

Belle watched closely and then just walked away,

I could tell by her demeanor the baby would be okay,


“We’d like to take Belle with us,” was one fireman’s remark,

“She had so much to tell us without even one frantic bark,

She was calm in an emergency and she was constantly aware,

A dog that can do so many things is certainly very rare,”


A woman approached, “What have you done to my car?

You’ve broken a window and my house is so far,

My children don’t like the air blowing in their faces,

Somebody has to fix this so we can go places,”


Belle growled at the woman, something was not right,

Belle rarely growled but she was ready to fight,

The children were trying to hide behind me,

I wanted to ask Belle, “What could it be?”


“Don’t worry, ma’am, whenever there’s some doubt,

We call the sheriff and he can work it all out,”

The fireman wanted the kids away from danger,

He was becoming certain this woman was a stranger,


“Come on, kids,” she said as she backed away,

But she ignored the baby who on the ground lay,

Belle blocked her path so she couldn’t escape,

I thought, “All Belle needs is a Superman’s cape,”


Several police cars arrived at nearly the same time,

Apparently the police were working a major crime,

The woman was surrounded and nobody was hurt,

One deputy said, “You must have heard about the Amber alert,”


When all was explained from the finish to the start,

All were convinced that Belle had a big heart,

She’d saved three children from inherent danger,

And helped capture a woman who was a stranger,


Belle doesn’t like all the publicity or strife,

All she wants to do is live a quiet life,

But no matter how sweet life is each day,

She wants to do more than just eat and play,


With all of her quirks and strange whims,

She choose what she wants except for close trims,

She can ride up front with her face in the breeze,

Except when it’s cold and I don’t want to freeze.






















English: Lego car animation created by slow-mo...
Image via Wikipedia

S. T. O. P.

Ages ago, when cars were raked and chopped,

There weren’t cell phones or games to be shopped,

And many young kids took the time to drag Main,

Whether the night was clear or pouring rain,

It was a time of confusion and serious doubt,

Where should young kids go if they wanted to hang out?

During this period lived three Signs of the time,

I know this is weird but their names do not rhyme,

Stop lived with his two brothers, Yield, and Slow,

And hung out at corners where most people go,

Stop grew tired of being ignored like you might expect,

People waved at him but they showed little respect,

Some raced through without thought of danger,

Some turned off their lights at intersections, (even stranger)

Stop thought it could happen one day that cars crashed,

He thought cars should halt before someone got mashed,

But Slow and Yield argued and could not agree,

Just reducing the speed was enough, they said, just wait and see,

The brothers searched for solutions all through the night,

And finally they were all happy by dawn’s early light,

Slow would show first, and Yield would be next,

Stop would wait patiently to keep cars from wrecks,

Slow and Yield were respected and rarely got blame,

But Stop stirred up some who made fun of his name,

His name was used as an acronym for many phrases,

But Stop grew to accept them as they went through phases,

1.  Stop Teasing Our Police

2.  Squeal Tires on Pavement

3.  Start to Open Presents

4.  Start the Oprah Program

5.  Stop Testing Our Patience

6.  Stop Telling on People

Stop became well known and recognized by all,

It wasn’t because he was handsome or nine feet tall,

Stop’s sign wasn’t common or made from a riddle,

His sign was a red octagon with his name in the middle,

Slow with a rectangle and Yield with sides of three,

The brothers were happy, as happy as can be.


Going Camping, Thinking Positive

A white-tailed deer
Image via Wikipedia

My first impression of the north woods town,

Was not one in which beauty was found,

Smoke rose from the pulp mills and rising dust,

Logging trucks bulging with logs, ready to bust,   

Surely that is what all tourists chance to see,

Or were my negative thoughts playing tricks on me,

It was early evening so I decided to stop for fuel,

Don’t get stranded without gas is my first rule,

And in the woods where fewer people were found,

Gas stations were rare, and at night were shut down,

While my pickup was filling I strolled inside,

Bought a coffee and some chips to ease the ride,

On my way out I glanced at a car pulling slowly in,

The driver was scowling, anger showing, no grin,

“Whatcha lookin’ at?” he snarled as he passed me by,

“You got some kind of problem? Should I black your eye?”

I hurried on past without stopping to converse,

I was on vacation, no reason to argue or worse,

Sipping a hot coffee and munching my chips,

Singing loudly to no one and enjoying my trip,

When the pickup sputtered, coughed and died,

I coasted to the edge of the steep mountainside,

I mused over my predicament, it was not to my liking,

I could stay all night there, or I could begin hiking,

Two logging trucks roared by, shaking my truck,

“If I stay here on the edge, I could just be out of luck,”

A car approached in the darkness and came to a stop,

The driver got out, it was the rude man from the shop,

He glared, “Hah,” he said, and on the ground spat,

“Serves you right for staring at people, and that is that,”

I started to protest but he was already on his way,

“I’m not going to let you ruin what’s left of this day,”

I hiked north along the road, hoping to find a town,

But several hours passed slowly with no one around,

A commotion in front of me, something in the road,

A deer, still alive, stunned and scared, towards it I strode,

I talked to it calmly, quietly, urging it to relax,

Amazingly the deer ceased kicking, and listened to facts,

With my heart in my throat, I checked out the deer,

“You’re going to be fine,” I said, “when you’re over your fear,”

I lifted and pulled as the deer struggled to its feet,

It looked at me for a moment, its recovery complete,

It stumbled and then bounded away into the night,

I was alone once more and feeling all right,

Dawn broke silently and quickly, the sun touching the trees,

I thought of the emptiness of my life, in varying degrees,

I caught myself, “I can’t let negative thoughts slip in,

Negative brings negative, lets the erosion begin,

I must think positive, for positive forces I need,

What can I do right now, that would be a good deed?”

I began picking up cans and paper lining the way,

“I’ll do this while I’m thinking of places to stay,”

Several times I heard footsteps in the forest nearby,

Yet when I stopped, only birds and wind caught my eye,

A car slowed, stopped, and seemed waiting for me,

It was the rude man with two others, now there were three,

They were carrying baseball bats and I felt a sudden chill,

I was the target they wanted, they were after a thrill,

“Whatcha lookin’ at?” he growled and for once had a grin,

“There’s no way to escape this group of men,”

Now this is where my story sounds confusing and surreal,

Out of the bushes shapes came hurtling, it didn’t seem real,

The three men were knocked down and thrown aside,

I started running, but there was no place to hide,

I ran, I jogged, I walked, exhausted but continuing on,

Trying to separate fact from fiction, all reason gone,

A pickup pulled alongside me, two men in hard hats,

Offered me a ride into town, and that was that,

A short conversation of which they could make no sense,

About positives being better whenever I’m tense,

I arranged for a tow truck to take me back,

We collected my pickup and I was again on track,

I saw the rude man’s car still waiting where he parked,

I wondered a moment where they had embarked,

There was too much I didn’t understand about this night,

Later on I would wonder how I came out all right.

(to be continued)

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