Wednesday, August 22, 2007

The time I was kidnapped

I was kidnapped when I was eleven years old.

Not really kidnapped, but well, here’s the story . . .

. . . about a lovely lady who my dad had met after he and mom divorced. I was eleven and she had a daughter, age ten, (who had hair of gold), and a little boy, age two. Dad and Sue had been dating a while and it was getting serious. Good for them.

Anyway, my soon-to-be step sister, Terry, had gone to visit her grandmother who lived in West Virginia. It turned out that Terry was unable to fly back on her own since it would have involved an airport transfer so Dad and Sue decided to meet them halfway to retrieve her. Halfway between San Marcos Texas and West Virginia turned out to be . . .
. . . Tuscaloosa Alabama.

My brother, Brad, age nine, and I had been camping with my dad when this trip was planned. So, off we go in Dad’s little Chevelle two-door coup: Dad, Sue, Brad and little Michael, off to Tuscaloosa, eight hundred miles away.

Late that night, we were somewhere in Louisiana and my dad said I should call my mom. The thing is, my mom and grandmother had custody of Brad and me. We were just on our daddy-visitation time when we cut the camping trip short and took off for Tuscaloosa.

I was only too happy to cut the camping trip short and go off to see exotic places like Shreveport Louisiana, Jackson Mississippi, and Tuscaloosa Alabama three whole states away!

So, we’re at some little restaurant in Louisiana and I made the collect call to my mom. (I remember that the pay phone cost only a nickel in Louisiana and I was impressed with that). I said, “Hi mom! Guess where I am? I’m in Louisiana!!”

Well, that was the wrong way to handle it. Mom hit the ceiling. She got my dad on the phone and practically accused him of kidnapping. Well, actually, I think she probably did. I was afraid that my exciting trip might be cancelled.

Well, they worked it out and we soldiered on. The next day, we discovered that Brad had acquired a bad case of poison ivy on the camping trip and it was really inflamed on his legs. We had to stop at an emergency room in Jackson Mississippi for treatment. Poor little guy. He was really miserable.

The rest of the trip, Brad had to sit in the front seat in with the air conditioner blowing on his legs. Since a 1968 two-door Chevelle coup only has bucket seats in the front, Sue had to sit in the little back seat with Michael and me.

We retrieved Terry in Tuscaloosa, spent the night and headed back. Now, poor Sue was in the back seat with Michael, me and Terry. Also, I had acquired a sack of peaches from a roadside stand which I had dropped and were now smashed all over the floor in the back. And since Brad had to have the a/c blowing on him, the four of us were swealtering in the back with the smashed peaches. For eight hundred miles. With four kids.

It’s a wonder they went ahead with the marriage a few months later. But they did.

We still laugh about that trip to this day: Mom accusing my dad of kidnapping us across state lines; Brad and his poison ivy; Sue shoved in the back seat with three kids and fermenting peaches for eight hundred miles.

Hardly what you’d consider The Brady Bunch.


At 7:38 PM , Blogger Lorraine said...

Here's a story, of a lovely car ride...

At 10:31 AM , Anonymous Bro said...

Thank you for saying it was my legs instead of what is between them. Swole up so it looked like a softball with a navel. Truly a car ride I'll never forget.


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