All names have been changed to protect the innocent. :0)
I grew up in a small town and a wonderful neighborhood. All the parents knew each other, as they all had grown up together. This meant that the kids of the neighborhood could pretty much run free, as everyone looked out for us. If it was time to eat, we were fed and if it was getting dark we were sent home.
We had one home that became the social hub, all of us kids would gathered there the most. It was right smack in the middle of the neighborhood and they ALWAYS had home made cookies on hand. They had 8 kids already, so maybe the theory at that point was what was a few more coming and going.. Naturally Marie became like a second Mom to most of us, since we were all there on a regular basis. I know this was true for me, as my BFF growing up was her son Jay. We are the same age and went all through school together.
Jay is the third oldest out of the eight and the runt.. But let me tell ya he stands at 6'2, so that tells you how the Smith boys are built. (BIG) He and I together don't always make the best of choices, so we got into our fair share of trouble. There is one particular time that I want to share....
We were sixteen, in his truck and just coming back from a party. We had another one of our friends with us, Brad. So we were pretty wound up and it was getting late. There weren't many cars on the road with us at this point and we were pulling up to a red light. Jay was driving, I was in the middle and Brad was in the passenger seat. I saw Jay look up into the rear view mirror and smirk, so I looked up too. Jay is second nature to me so I knew what he was thinking before he even shouted it out... I saw we were alone on both sides and only a single pair of lights were coming so it was pretty safe. So when Jay shouted "Fire Drill", I started giggling and sliding out after him.
Ok, so for those of you who didn't do silly things like this in your youth.. A fire drill is where everyone in the car exits the direction of the person who initiated it and runs around the vehicle and back in that same side before the red light changes.
We made it all the way to the end of his truck before the very bright beam of light came on right in our faces. Then we did the domino thing.. I hit Jay's back and Brad took us all the way down. So we are now on the ground at the feet of the officer that has now come to the front of his car to tell us to get up and on the side walk... NOW! He was a bit grumpy in my opinion. His fellow officer was having a hard time keeping a straight face while we were lined up on the side walk. He said if he only had a camera to take a picture of our faces when that light came on..
Anyway.. Officer grumpy ended up giving us a lecture on safety and pulling me aside to suggest that if one of those boys was my boy friend he was doing a very poor job of keeping me safe. Jay got a ticket and we were sent on our way.
The following Friday I was at Jay's baseball game and his older brother Alex sat down next to me. Alex is the oldest of the eight and is four years older than Jay and I. At this time I always thought that Alex wanted to be my older brother and that bugged me to no end. I already had an older brother that watched me 24/7 and made dating impossible. So when he sat down and asked me about the party last weekend I was less than polite.
The conversation went something like this:
Me: "Spare me the lecture, I know we were stupid and blah blah..."
Him: "Oh honey I didn't come over with a lecture, just a promise."
Me: "A promise?"
Him: " I promise you ever put yourself in that kind of danger again and you will find yourself over my knee."
Yeah, that was the first time my now husband promised me a trip over his knee..
I asked my husband once when did he know I was the one.. He said remember that time when you were ten and I told you that you were short... (I was super short then and sensitive about it) You looked me straight in the eye and stomped on my foot and said "well I can grow, but you are stuck being a boy so how are you going to fix that?"
Yeah, I sort of remember that happening.
He said that he just knew that feisty little girl was going to grow into one hell of a woman.. His woman. :0)