Candy had a good idea for a shower, but she couldn’t make the hut for the shower stall by herself, so all of the girls made it. “Put two poles in the ground on this side of the river,” she told Kris. “I’ll put the other two on the left side,” Cari said. As soon as the poles were all even, the girls set the shower stall on top of them. The stall had a door, a hole in the top and bottom was made of criss-crossed pieces of wood. “Bring in the hose,” Stephanie called. “Here it comes,” Cathy said. “Boy,” Kris gasped. “It’s heavy.” About six inches in the hose was a piece of clam shell with holes in it. In the very front was a piece of wood that plugged up the hole. When one string was pulled, the cork came out and hung on the hose by another string. The other end of the hose was a pig skin funnel. To keeps rocks out and to support the funnel there was a screen made from thin bamboo. “Behold, our island’s first shower,” Candy said happily. “Now we need someone to try it.” “Me,” James piped up. He ran up the ramp into the shower. He reached for the cord to turn the shower on, but he was too short. “Mama,” he said. Stephanie put her arm in the shower and pulled the cord. “Ow, cold!” he yelled, as he ran out of the shower. When he ran out, he tripped and fell off the ramp and fell into the river. “Mama!” he cried. Stephanie picked James up and put him on the sand to dry off. The boys each took a shower when they got back from picking food. They all agreed that Candy’s shower was really a good idea. Late that night, Kris heard someone outside laughing. She picked up a candle and walked out of the hut. In the dim light she could see that James had turned on of the rafts upside down and was jumping on it like a trampoline. “James,” Kris said. “Hewwo Kwis,” James called. Shouldn’t you be in the hut?” she asked. “No,” he told her. “No, no, no, no!” Kris knocked on Darrel’s door. “Are you two awake?” she asked. “Yes,” Darrel answered. “What is it?” “Your baby is out there playing,” Kris told him. Stephanie walked outside. “James,” she said. “Get yourself in here!” “No mama,” he yelled. “I’m going to count to three,” she warned. “And if you’re not in here, I’m gonna come and get you.” “One, two, fwee,” James said. Darrel walked up to the door. “Get in here, young man!” he called. “Hi papa,” James said. Stephanie went out toward James. He jumped of the raft and ran into the shower. “Ill get him,” Darrel told Stephanie. Darrel walked into the shower and picked James up. James was high enough to pull on the shower cord, which he did. Darrel got soaked and had to put the baby down to put the plug in. This gave James a chance to take off again. “Papa wet,” James Laughed. “Mama mad,” Stephanie said. She wasn’t laughing. She caught James by the hand and swatted him on his rear end. Then she went to put him in his bed. James acted like she had cut his hand off. When Darrel walked in, James cried, “Papa!” “What?” Darrel asked. “Mama hit,” James told him. “Good,” Darrel said as he climbed into bed. James looked confused as he stopped crying and went to sleep. This island must have been the most boring place in the world, or so the castaways thought. One day they all decided to go together and explore the island. “Hey,” Cari called. “Look over here.” “It’s a cave,” Brent said. “Let’s go in.” “Someone light a torch,” Cathy told them. “It’s pretty dark in there,” Kevin lit a torch and walked in with everyone following him. “Oh scawy,” James whispered as he grabbed his father’s leg. “Papa, ho’d me.” Darrel picked the baby up and walked in along with the others. “Wow,” Lance exclaimed. “Look at this.: The party entered a large room. In it was wooden furniture, a bed, cups, plates, silverware, and some pictures on the wall. “I guess were. Not the first ones here,” Cari said. They began looking through all the drawers and cupboards. Darrel found an old change purse with some gold pieces in it. Kris opened a barrel that was full of old clothes. Candy found some vegetable seeds and Steve found a pair of bifocals. “Cawi,” James said. “What this is?” “It’s a book, dear,” Cari told him. “A book?” Kevin asked. “Let me see that.” Kevin opened the book and looked at the torn and brittle pages. “This isn’t just a book,” he told them. “It’s someone’s diary.” “Really?” Lance asked. “Let me see that.” He squinted at the faint writing. “It says his name was John something … it starts with a C.” Lance read a couple of the inscriptions in the back. “April 23, 1819. The rain has stopped. I went out and got some food. I saw the black savages coming I will find somewhere to hide. April 19, 1819. The savages saw me. They will take me head if they catch me. I must leave this island. April 23, 1819. I have been shot. My wound is bad. The arrow went deep into my stomach. I think this may be my last entry. April 24, 1819. I thought I would die last night. My body feels like it is tied in a knot. My sight is going. I will not write anymore.” “It would be awful to be here all alone,” Kris said. “Just think,” Cari added. “To never see civilization.” “Jame has never seen anyone except us,” Darrel told them. “That’s right,” Candy said. “He must get pretty sick of seeing us.” “No,” Lance laughed. “You like us, don’t you? Hey, where are you.” “Paapaa!” James cried. “Bug, paapa!” They all rushed into another chamber to find James sitting on a rock with a large, orange-red scorpion crawling up his leg. To be continued …
The Best of The WorstThis blog features writing from my younger years … from mortifying diary entries and bad poetry to high school newspaper articles and short stories. As a tortured teen, I would have been crushed had my poignant poems and powerful prose not been taken seriously. But the funniest things are often those that are unexpected, and re-reading my efforts as an adult, I find that I was often at my best and most entertaining when I was trying to be anything but that.
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