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All Girls' Camp Out (standard:humor, 2638 words)
Author: Ira L. WhiteAdded: Jan 06 2003Views/Reads: 1926/1159Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)
As a parent, I knew the girls were up to something. Letting them have a camp out was a way of finding out.
 



The house we lived in at this time was a large two bedroom on a quiet
street with a back yard large enough to host a scrimmage for the 49ers. 
Amethyst was seven and Chrysalis was nine. Delilah, our mutt, had a 
ball in the back yard. It was large enough for her to have room to run. 
When it cooled off for the evening, the girls, Delilah and I would play 
a round of soccer, and that suited Delilah just fine. The only drawback 
to this humongous yard was that the neighborhood cats used the distance 
between the back door and the back fence rather well. One cat would 
jump from the fence to a tree in the yard near the back of the lot. 
This cat would get our dog's attention while another cat crept up on 
her dish of food nestled next to the back door. When the first cat had 
got their fill, the cat would walk out on the limb leading to the edge 
of the yard and simply disappear over the fence only to reappear next 
to the dish as soon as the other cat had jumped into the tree and 
gotten the poor pooch's attention. 

A great feature of the neighborhood from a parental point of view was
that there were a couple of girls the same age as mine. There was 
Michelle who was Chrysalis' age and also Tammy who was the age of 
Amethyst. Since the street was named Haddon, I called the pack of girls 
that ran from one kid's house to the next, searching for something to 
get into, to eat or to drink the “Haddon Four.” I was able to let my 
girls run the streets secure in the knowledge that they were not alone, 
knowing also that several pairs of eyes besides mine were watching. 
Besides the parents of the other two girls, there were several retired 
folks who also kept an eye on the neighborhood kids. 

The girls loved to take Delilah with them and the dog loved all of those
girls even though they tended to dress her up as a baby and make her 
ride in a little carriage. On the one hand she loved the attention, but 
on the other hand it was quite obvious she felt degraded. Delilah's 
presence was also a plus for security reasons as Delilah was very 
protective of the kids. She would not let anyone strange near them, and 
if a parent was so unthinking as to aim a little swat at the bottom of 
one of the kids in front of her, it would never be delivered because 
the dog immediately grabbed the offensive arm and held it in her mouth. 


It was in this utopian paradise that we lived. Yet there was a little
trouble brewing in paradise. I could feel the overtones of a looming 
crisis and I heard the whispering of little voices deep in the planning 
stage of a nefarious plot. One does not know how devious a pair of 
sweet little girls can be unless one is their parent. I looked in vain 
for a way to decode their whispers. I searched the house and yard for 
implements that they might find useful in their secret affair. I 
cornered them alone and grilled each one mercilessly, all to no avail. 
To the uninitiated, everything seemed fine on the surface. But I knew 
the kids were up to something and judging from the top level security 
they were using, it had to be something big. 

I tried to make the girls slip up, but the Haddon Four were not talking.
Getting some info out of them was more difficult than getting your 
quarter back after you have put it in a slot machine. My break came 
suddenly and without warning. Parents have to be opportunists. When the 
opportunity comes, we have to be ready with a quickly devised plan to 
accomplish our ends. I must admit, I am good at this. 

The girls were whining around late one afternoon. It was only a couple
of weeks into summer and they couldn't find anything to do. I tossed 
out a couple of ideas: “How about clean up your room? Or be nice to Dad 
and clean the whole house. Mow the yard?” None of these choices seemed 
to excite any of the girls. I hadn't expected them to. Free labor is 
hard to find these days, and I wasn't expecting them to fall for this 
particular ploy. It was merely meant to set them up, for I had already 
devised an airtight plan that would get me what I wanted. 

“Dad,” said Chrysalis, “We don't want to work. We want to play.” 

“Yes,” chimed in Amethyst, “and none of your tricks to get us to do
housework.” 

“OK, girls, what about a campout?” 

Immediately four girls defied gravity as only the young can do and
screamed, “YES!” 


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