Since I'm using my new laptop and sitting at my desk in my room instead of in the office, I can look out on the sunrise. The sun is coming up; a flaming ball of fire. The sky, except for the very edge of the eastern horizon, is pale blue. The pine tree outside my window is bending and swaying in the wind though the flag is only rippling. I expect it is slightly cooler than it was yesterday. :) Yesterday was in the 60s and beautiful. Today is supposed to be in the 40s.
This week has been ah, so delightful. I've gotten to stay home except for a brief trip to Connie's to check on our booth yesterday. :) This is the first time this month that I've stayed home and had no one coming over for more than two days! I've enjoyed it. My proof copy of the "being republished" Home Fires is on its way to me. I can't wait to see how it looks. :)
I've gotten to catch up with a few friends, catalog more books and read. :) Except for the craft and cook books, downstairs is cataloged!!! Now we can get to work on the books up here. I have done some of them, I just am not sure which ones since it was a long time ago when I did them. Oh well.
Next week looks a little busier, but not too bad. It is the following weeks that are crazy again.
My writing. Why is it that when I have the change to write every evening, I either can't think of a thing to write or I don't want to? I know the book I was reading had something to do with it. :) It was hard to put down. But, I did manage to get some written. I've started a longer short story that I think you all will like, but I'll wait to post any of it until I have it all written.
Now, speaking of writing, here is the last of last weeks story and the picture. Sorry for the black spot on it. Something got on or in the camera. :(
Lost in the Dunes - Part 2
Last week . . .
“Now,” I panted, “will you please be quiet and quit scaring all the common sense out of yourself and Libby?”
For a moment he looked at me, then to my surprise I saw his eyes fill and he half whimpered, “I’m sick of this sand. And I’m hungry.”
I knew how he felt. All we’d seen for hours was nothing but sand, and our lunches were still packed on our bikes back at the Nature Center. Standing up, I gave him my hand and pulled him to his feet. We looked about. It was a fairly large, flat plain dotted here and there with clusters of coarse plants.
“Maybe a helicopter could land down here,” I told Chad. I didn’t really know, but neither did I want to climb the slope again. So, I shouted up to Libby to come down. As she slid down, Chad limped over and sat down near one of the bush-like plants.
“Are you okay?” I asked. “Sorry if I hurt you.”
He gave a slight shrug. “I’m okay.”
His face was pale under his freckles and several scratches on his face, neck and arms were bleeding. “You don’t look so good,” I told him.
“You don’t either,” he retorted, eyeing me almost as closely as I had been eyeing him.
I glanced down. My jacket was torn even worse and my shirt wasn’t in much better shape. Putting a hand to my face, I pulled it away when I felt blood. I tried to smile, and realized that my lip was cut and swollen. “I guess that will teach us not to fight on a sandy hill again.” I attempted to grin, but don’t think I succeeded very well.
“Yeah,” Chad mumbled.
Soon Libby was running over to us. “What were you two doing?” she demanded. “You could have been killed.” She glared at us both and then sat down near Chad and her temper died. “I want to go home.”
“I know you do, Lib.”
“So,” Chad asked dully, “what do we do now?”
Why was it all up to me to decide things? I didn’t know any more than they did. I thought again of Elliot. He had told me to be a man. I guess that meant I had to be responsible, but I still didn’t know what we should do. Should we stay down here? Should we keep on going? Then something Dad told me once came to mind. “If you ever get lost, don’t wander around. Stay put! We’d find people a lot faster if they would only stay in one place.” Since Dad worked as a ranger for this state park, I figured he knew what he was talking about.
I sat down. “We’re going to stay here.”
No one spoke for several minutes. The sun continued to sink and a gentle, slightly cool breeze sprang up. It was very mild, like a tiny kitten caressing your face with her tongue, in striking contrast to the fierce winds which had stung our faces and torn our clothes like a ferocious tiger and attempted to bury us with sand. Still, I knew it would get colder, and with our torn clothes we would feel it even more.
“Here,” I said, “let’s all sit together in the last of the sunlight and try to keep warm.” I sat down on the other side of Libby and silence again fell on us. We watched the shadows lengthen on the scrubby bushes. “Guys,” I exclaimed as a sudden thought struck me, “we haven’t prayed!”
“Oh Devin, pray right now, please,” Libby begged.
Chad said nothing. He didn’t go to church much and never talked about God or Jesus. I didn’t even know if he was saved. Without waiting for him to say anything, if he was going to say anything, I bowed my head and prayed.
“Dear Heavenly Father, we sure are in a mess right now. We got lost in that storm and now can’t find our way home. Mom and Dad will be worried and so will Mr. and Mrs. Osborn. It’s growing dark now and we’re, well, we’re a little uncertain about things. Please send us some help. Let Dad be able to find us soon. And please, God, don’t let Mom get too worried. In Jesus Name, Amen”
Beside me Libby gave a sigh. “I feel better,” she said, “but I’m still--”
“Don’t say it, Lib,” I told her. “You have to be brave.” But I wasn’t feeling too brave myself. The sun had all but set and the stars were out. There was no moon and it grew cooler. We scooted closer to each other and listened to the silence.
A far off cry from some nocturnal animal at last broke the silence. I didn’t like it and I had to clench my hands to keep from shivering.
“Devin,” Chad spoke low. “What animals roam about sand dunes at night?”
“I don’t know.” I had been to the nature center more times then I could count, but right then I couldn’t remember anything I had seen. All I could picture was Dad in his park ranger uniform with his hat on and his friendly smile. Would he find us? My head ached and my lip didn’t feel like my own. I knew Chad at least, was in the same state.
The silence was growing oppressive. Any little noise caused us to jump and Libby was squeezing my hand so tightly that her fingernails felt like they were cutting into my flesh. We had to do something or we would all scream.
“Let’s sing,” I suggested.
“I can’t unless I get a drink,” Libby whispered.
“All right,” I agreed. “Let’s each get a drink and then we’ll sing. But don’t drink too much,” I knew we had to save some water in case we weren’t found until morning. I cringed at the very thought.
We sang song after song until our throats were so dry and our voices so hoarse that we sounded worse than a flock of crows.
We must have all drifted to sleep after that. I know I did for the next thing I knew, there was a blinding light all around us and a loud noise. “Great!” I cried, not quite awake. “A thunderstorm is just what we don’t need.” I could feel a strong wind.
Then the light was gone, but the noise and wind remained. I rubbed my eyes. That was not a storm, it was a helicopter! And it was setting down at the other end of our little plain!
“Hey, Libby! Chad!” I croaked, “They did find us!”
“Devin! Libby! Chad!”
It was Dad. I could see him running towards us followed by a few more men. Then his arms were around us and I heard him whisper, “Thank you, Father!” as he hugged us.
We had blankets wrapped about our shoulders and Dad picked up Libby. One of the other men picked up Chad because he couldn’t stand and a strong arm was put around me. “Can you walk, Son?” a deep voice asked.
“As long as I don’t have to climb any more sand dunes,” I grimaced, wincing as the rough blanket rubbed my sand scratched neck. We were found and we were going home. I wasn’t the one making the decisions now. I whispered my own prayer of thankfulness before I was helped into the warm, lighted helicopter.
The End - At least for now
Did you like it? What did you think of it?