This is a tale of adventure and derring-do.
This is a true story* that the faint of heart dare not read.
I know it to be true for I was a witness to the happening. It was years ago, but my memory of the fateful day is strong. 'Twas the bleak midwinter and the family had been housebound for days. My younger siblings were restless and eager for more entertainment than two channels of television and a Clue game missing the weapons could afford.
Finally, at her wits end with their squabbling and bickering, my mother sent the two outdoors to gather wood for the fireplace. The great iron dragon in our living room had gulped wood ravenously for the last few cold days and its hungry belly needed replenished once again.
So, dressed warmly in layers of chore clothes and hand me downs, the pair went out into the swirling snow storm and cold to gather wood to keep the family warm.
They made one fateful detour. They were lured by the sight of the frozen backyard pond and were tempted from their familial duties to skate across its diamond hard surface. I'm sure the brother protested and said they surely must bring in firewood before playing. Or was it the sister?
Either way, as you can guess, temptation overruled duty. Sadly, as they laughed and played and slid across they surface of the tiny pond, they discovered that the ice was not safe after all.
Cracks zigged and zagged, splitting the ice ahead of the desperate pair as they raced to reach the nearest bank.
With hands still clutched together, the brother and sister fell through the ice!
And found themselves.....
Knee deep in $#!?.
It seems that the backyard pond was a not a pond at all. Yes, cute green frogs inhabited the water in summer. Cattails ringed the bank. But the pond was, indeed, the farm family's sewage system.
Sadly, the (formerly gleeful) pair pulled their feet from the sucking mire (surely leaving behind a boot and even a sock) and slogged their smelly way across the snow-covered yard, past the neglected woodpile and to the back door where they proceeded to bawl and squawl. (ok, not really, but I'm pretty sure they yelled loudly to be let in!)
Mom made her way to the back door, drying her hands on a dish towel. She called for their older sister (whom had stayed behind, ostensibly to tend the fire but actually to 'finish another chapter!!) to make sure there was plenty of room for the wood the pair had been sent to get.
Imagine Mother's surprise when she was greeted at the door, not by two cherubs whose arms were heaped with firewood, but by two dirty and smelly creatures whose feet (only one of which was wearing a shoe) were caked in muck and ick and were fast freezing to the ground.
Imagine Mother's chagrin when she remembered that she was not able to hose them off in the backyard.
Imagine the smell when the clothes came inside prior to being placed in the washer.
Imagine that this is a true* story.
Which it is.
*(mostly and to the best of my memory except where it might not be true cause those were the boring bits and I thought they might need livened up a bit...because, I hate to admit it, but we never had a Clue game)
*addendum to this fantabulous story: After quizzing my family, no one remembers this so evidently it is a false memory. My sister (not the one pictured above) and cousin fell in the farm pond while attempting to skate. But what kind of fun story is that? False memories are so much better!
Thanks, Taylor, The Lumberjack's Wife, whose post this morning triggered this memory!
The Moral of the story--The pair never went skating on thin ice again. Well. Actually they did, just not on the pond behind the house.
Many stories herein are subject to the faulty, and sometimes creative, memory of the blog owner and should not be taken as factual, although the names and events are real! Kind of.