The Strong Ones
We drove up the snowy, winding road towards the cozy A-frame cabin. Maisy whimpered as we made turn after turn, carsick and clutching the soup pot Mom had managed to grab before we left. We were packed like sardines in the back of the car, with bags of clothes at our feet, blankets stuffed between and around us. Maisy held the soup pot in case she needed something to be sick into. I’d been holding Petey on my lap the whole way up, a bag of his dog food jammed in next to my elbow. He’d been uncharacteristically good for most of the drive, but even he was starting to whine.
We drove up the snowy, winding road towards the cozy A-frame cabin. I stared at my phone to keep from looking out the window, now that we were past the stretch where the guard rails ended and the private road started. Ben hummed as he drove, at ease and confident as he whipped our little Honda around curves that made my stomach turn. He learned to drive on this road, I reminded myself for the thousandth time. He knows this mountain really really well.
A Man, The Plan, and How Bambi Nearly Wrecked Thanksgiving
My family had Thanksgiving down to a science. Which is to say, my mother had Thanksgiving down to a science. A science broken down into a multi-page planning document broken down into half-hour increments starting three days before Thanksgiving Day itself.
The creature swam in a slow circle, her silver-gray tail rippling in a steady motion that reminded Darcy of the summer she learned the butterfly stroke. She’d expected the mermaid to be bigger, closer to human sized, instead of measuring barely four feet long, tail included. Darcy hadn't gotten a glimpse of her face yet, but the rest of her body was littered with barnacles and a film of grime that made her want to get the hose out, spray the creature down, see what she was really like under all that…ocean.
Phweeeeeeet! “Everybody stop! Hands up in the air!” Fifty-six tiny arms jerked up as if controlled by a single string. Megan’s whistle rattled against her chest as she headed for the touch tank, her twenty-eight charges for the hour staring as she jogged. First graders. Old enough to obey without the requisite thirty seconds younger children needed to process a command. Megan gave them the you’re-not-in-trouble smile she’d perfected as a camp counselor in high school and stopped, putting her hands on her waist.