Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Family Memories ~ Dancing in the Moonlight

courtesy  kootation.com

A chilly night settled in the Smokey Mountains as the girls prepared to sleep.  They changed their clothes, giggled, rolled their eyes at each other and made an exaggerated effort to secure all the zippers of their tent.  They had witnessed firsthand that skunks could squeeze into small openings in the doorways of a tent, effectively evacuating the human residents in record times.  More than once they had watched panicked occupants shove and trip their way out of the tent where a skunk had entered.  They didn't see reason to risk it.

The chill caused the girls to crawl deeper into their sleeping bags as they arranged their various pillows.  As always there was a pillow to rest the head, and another to hug.  Stuffing the “hugging” pillow into the sleeping bag caused much giggles and grunts from both sides of the tent as they each laughed at the sight of the other. 

They were the two “older girls” of the ripe old ages of 11 and 14.  But their status as elder had earned them a tent of their own, while the younger girls had to sleep in the overhead compartment of the camper atop the back of the truck.  They were grateful for the space to stretch out, even if it did require gymnastics to arrange their bedding “just so.”

They flipped off the flashlight and snuggled deeper as their minds floated into that soft, fluffy state of sleep.  They entertained dreams of being pioneers in a new wilderness; a small wood cabin…with running water, Myrna wanted running water in her cabin.   In a dream you get to choose.

courtesy   picstopin.com

They awoke with a startle!

“Lynne!  Did you hear that?” Myrna whispered to her sister.  A few grunts came from Lynne’s side.

“HA!  Ha!  Go!  Git!” someone was yelling or  trying to be heard over a metallic clanging.  “Ya!  Ga!  Go!  Put that down!”

Lynne was fully awake now, and wiggling out of her sleeping bag.  Myrna was quick behind her.  “What do you think is going on?” Lynne hissed.  For some reason, they both felt their presence should remain unknown for the moment.  They crawled to the door of the tent, and Myrna started to unzip the entry.

Lynne stopped her hand, “Wait!  Check to make sure there’s no skunks’ rolling in the dirt in front of the door!”  Myrna nodded.  Around the mountains camp sites, they had seen the skunks rolling and flopping in the dusty paths.

Slowly they rose up to the screened portion of their tent.  What they saw befuddled them…

courtesy WALLMAY

Their father stood in the shaft of moonlight, naked but for a pair of white bvd’s.  He stood hopping from one foot to the other, a frying pan in one hand with the metal spoon in the other.   He alternately hopped and yelled or stopped to clang the pan.

Myrna looked at Lynne with confusion.  They glanced at their father in the clearing and sank to their heels.  “We must be dreaming Lynne” Myrna said crawling back to her sleeping bag.  Shrugging, they quickly fell back to sleep.

The next morning, Lynne mentioned to mother, “Myrna and I had the weirdest dreams last night of dad dancing around with a frying pan wearing only his underwear.”

Father choked on his pancake and mother laughed aloud, spewing hers back onto her plate.  She continued to laugh as dad explained ruefully, “What you did NOT see what the big brown bear standing on the other side of the camp with our ice chest held high under his arm pit!  He planned to take off with our milk, eggs and meat and I had no intention of letting it go quietly.  I did however keep close to the camper in case he took exception to my noisy dancing.

courtesy 123RF

The girls eyes were wide when they realized that meant there had been a bear just yards from their tent.  They shuddered as they ate breakfast.  Myrna grinned…”This is going to be an awesome story to tell of dad dancing in the moonlight in his underwear!”

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