R is for …

As I’ve written many times, I spent a large portion of my childhood summers at the lake with my grandparents.
I was permitted to canvas a large area of road and woods, presumably because my grandmother had raised four children and knew what she was doing. No one tried to collect me or report me for being without supervision. I had to beware ofย idiot drivers, snakes, poison ivy, and that lady at the top of the hill, who Grandma said was “not right in the head.”

It was my sixth summer when I got to take my bike to the lake.

someone has pinned a bicycle identical to my own!

someone has pinned a bicycle identical to my own!

That sixth summer, I was allowed to ride my bike up and down the entire drive, no turns, no stops.
Since my perimeter had been extended, I got a new warning. In addition to idiot drivers, snakes, poison ivy, and the lady at the top of the hill, I was to look out for rapists, who might hide among the shrubs, particularly at night.

As a six-year-old, I had no idea what a rapist was.
At this same age, I believed I was skinny enough to slide downย the tub drain with my bath water, that my uncle had grown up near a place called Yonder, that the white dots in my fingernails represented lies I told, that spinach would put hair on my chest — and any number of common childhood truths.

I concluded a rapist was a type of critter, perhaps a large one that came out at night with the raccoon and possums, but one that wasn’t the slightest bit afraid of humans.


I envisioned a furry critter not unlike Cousin It, but with long, sharp fangsย and less personality. Something that would chase a bicycle, and with its fearsome bite, tear my feet off at the ankles.

My fear of the nocturnal, hairy, bush-dwelling rapist meant bike riding was best done between lunch and dinner, no exceptions.

(This post was written with humorous intent. If you did not smile or laugh, if you think I’ve made light of a serious subject, or if you’re feeling critical of my grandmother, then you have arrived at the wrong blog.)

About joey

Neurotic Bitch, Mother, Wife, Writer, Word Whore, Foodie and General Go-To-Girl
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25 Responses to R is for …

  1. baldjake70 says:

    Agreed! If you don’t get the humor in a child’s interpretation of the unknown then get to steppin!

    Liked by 4 people

  2. hollie says:

    I love your comment at the end. This did put a smile on my face. I love hearing how children process adult concepts and accept them as truths.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Dan Antion says:

    Her warnings seemed to have served the purpose well enough. Although, now I have an image of a little girl peddling away with two bloody stumps.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Sammy D. says:

    You’re the spitting image of the innocence of Scout in To Kill a Mockingbird !!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Jewels says:

    Haha @ ” At this same age, I believed I was skinny enough to slide down the tub drain with my bath water.” Reminds me of the time my brother told me that I was so small when I was born that I used to get lost in the shag carpeting and my family would have to hunt for me with a comb…

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Prajakta says:

    Oh I loved the comment in the end! ๐Ÿ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Faith Simone says:

    Ha! I love the disclaimer at the end. You have arrived at the wrong blog. Proceed to kick rocks and get on up outta here!

    And to think, you’re grandmother didn’t even have to face jail time for raising a “free range” child. Good times, indeed….

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Really? You think rape is funny!?!? Hahaha just yanking your chain. This was very funny and I did laugh.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Your Gran was obviously a wise woman, although I loved your little girl’s definition of ‘critter!’ Oh, and what a great bike too! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  10. cardamone5 says:

    Nope, right blog. Funny, as usual, and a good example of why kids need explanations as their own imaginations are huge and, well, imaginative! And, you know you were not wrong, and an adult’s explanation might have been close to your assumption: scary entity intent on harm, maybe with some feet pulled off at the ankles thrown in to ensure compliance.


    Liked by 1 person

  11. Adults’ warnings are often strange to a child when they are not explicit. My mother warned me once about a man who had exposed himself to a much older neighbor, an adult woman really. I was eight years old and very confused since I misunderstood the word. It sounded like “Contortionist,” so I didn’t understand why I had to avoid him since we had been to the circus and saw a Contortionist. Like your grandmother my mother didn’t tell me what the man was doing. Maybe it was better since I never saw him.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. She was very concerned for your well-being. And come to think of it, Cousin It does look a little creepy.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. markbialczak says:

    You are funny, Joey. Your grandmother had to warn you and allow you to be a kid at the lake. Good for her. It must have been nice to Summer just down the road from Yonder.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Anxious Mom says:

    LOL! At the same age, I thought a Ninja Turtle could be my bf ๐Ÿ˜€ Love the way kids’ brains think.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. April says:

    I had the same bike except my banana seat was sparkly pink. I loved that bike until my brother took it apart. That was his ‘thing’—never knew why he did it.

    Liked by 1 person

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