Friday, May 25, 2007

Boot Hill

I told them not to climb the hill, really a bluff, high and steep, but an inviting challenge for my friends. I told them my father did not allow us to climb the bluff. He said it was too dangerous. We might fall. And we might get lost when we got to the top where the alders grew so thickly. I told them we would all get in trouble if they climbed the hill.

But they climbed it anyway. Their father was a different kind of man. He allowed for accidents and other things in life that went wrong. They didn't understand the really bad position they were putting me in by climbing the hill on our grounds.

And they did get stuck up there, at least one of them did. Or maybe he got lost. I can't remember that detail right now. But I must have had to walk back down the beach to our cabin to tell our fathers that one of them hadn't come back down the hill and we didn't know where he was.

And it happened as I had said. My father erupted. I started running from him, knowing that it would hurt when he erupted. One of my hip boots came off as I ran. He picked it up. He caught me. And he flailed at me with my own boot. It hurt.

It hurt. I was not to blame.

It was my Boot Hill.