Crumbs From the Corner: Adventures in Woolgathering

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Oldest Trick in the Book

Sweet childish days, that were as long
As twenty days are now.
-From "To a Butterfly" by William Wordsworth

My mother used to collect me after school; it was rarely uneventful. We had our puerile games.
Her favourite was Last One Out of the Car; the moment that the car would come to a halt in our driveway we would scramble for our respective doorhandles and attempt to leave the other far behind.
Our garden gate had a rusted, slippery slimy latch and while one could get inside with just a push and without touching it, the gate had to be bolted to prevent our dogs from getting out. Therefore the most efficient way to avoid the unpleasantness was to have somebody enter the gate after you.
I was lacking in agility most times due to the weight and bulk of my schoolbag. Mater usually won except when she had her own items to carry.
One afternoon we were driving along home as usual and I distinctly felt a certain tension in the air. Mater was planning something, but I could not fathom at all what it was. Probably, knowing her, she had been plotting it all the afternoon long.
I gathered my bag and jacket, adjusted myself so that I could get out quickly, and hoped for the best.
And then, instead of going headfirst, my mother drove the car backwards into our driveway, at an angle. She fixed it so that the passenger side was against a stone wall with about an inch to spare. Laughing victoriously, she unclipped her seatbelt, wished me the best of luck, and ran off.
I had to clamber over my own seat as well as hers in order to exit the car, dragging my burdensome satchel with me.

It was a fine, swift bit of maneuvering. She played dirty that day, and won, and I retired, vowing never to play again.
That is, until I have my own car and the roles are reversed.


Beth said...

Your mother is so funny. It's the silly things that we remember about relationships, isn't it? They are what wrap us together tight with memories.

Pappy said...

Oh what tangled webs we weave.... Old age and treachery will always out over Youth and agility. Have a great weekend.

julochka said...

that's funny...and sounds like my family philosophy: "play to win, even when playing with children." heehee.

Phyllis Hunt McGowan said...

Beth, You are right- the silliest things, that's what I best recall. Unintentional craziness. Lots of fun.
Texican, my mother has been gloating all day and she very much agrees with you!
Julie, I'll win someday. I will. She can't hold out forever. Can she? ...

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