4001 Chapter 1. Yellow jacket

Chapter One. Long Night Ride

November sky’s overcast with bright white clouds in the small New England town: Bare trees lined the streets sides even the small hot dog stand no bigger than a boxed van was closed for the winter, Mostly all the boats at the Marina were covered up and out of the water, pale white canvas covers flapping in the chilled air, with just enough chilled in the air, to wear a light jacket outside not even zipped. That was me (Shawn) and Mike for you neither one liked zipping them up only when we were walking near the water shore, and then only if the wind was blowing strong. but more offend we could be found at the park not too far from home, but that old  pier that was roped off just behind the grocery store; it was posted ‘unsafe’ maybe so but not too us.

Skidding to a stop just at the rope both our bikes went to the ground never mine putting them on their kick stands someone might see them standing upright at least laying down they were out of sight to anybody going down the roadway. Besides the wind always blow them over when we tried before, Crossing each board knowing were the weak spots while looking down seeing the heads of nails working their way upward; but we knew that placing each foot step on the beams below the plank boards was a little safer than trying to walk on the middle parts.

Mike was something to fish with he always like using those Sandworms not me you can keep those thing they bite, sure everyone says they don’t but I got bite by one and never again will I fish with them, sitting on the edge with our legs dangling over the side just waiting for the fish to bite watching below the rippling water with little minnows swimming in small groups just waiting for the big fish to get them and my pole would be right on top of them, we both seen it happen only once but we still hope to see a big fish come in again in the mean time will just keep trying.

Large boats would slowly make way to the open ocean we both watch them make large waves in the water, Fishing was ok just it got boring after a while of not getting them to bite, Mostly we were feeding small fish that took our bate without even getting a hook snare gee no fish for the cat tonight maybe we can give him the crickets and watch him running around trying to catch it that’s always fun to watch before dinner.

Now this weekend was already looking good because my Dad or more my Parents had bought a used older Travel trailer, not quite as big as Mike Father. but after fixing the inside up it turn out ok’ Mom wasn’t too happy about the whole thing but they had little talks at night in their bedroom after the lights went out besides, ”It was at a real good price”, That’s what Dad Keep Telling Mom even if I never did find out how much he paid for it.

Mikes family had a used camper it was a big one way bigger than ours only by six feet having an eighteen foot travel trailer,  I could go with them mostly to keep Mike company, their again the few times we went we only sleep in it once only because it rained, mostly we like looking at the stars and night air leaving his parents alone, Mike said they were trying for a brother for him, we both would make smirk faces at each other every time his mother would scream out “Mike quite they might hear us”

Tag­ging along not far behind Michael Sr. was the plan that night!

Now supervisor on day shift from his warehouse job Michael Sr. could plan more camping trips not far from home but within hours driving time, Mike was all fired up about this weekend as we were taking our camper up just behind them tagging along a few hours later. Accompany them off early in the afternoon just before three helping where I could, mostly just watching Mikes dad checking everything twice just to make sure he had what he everything he needed, everything was ready and I waved as they left for New York.

Sitting watching TV when the Phone rang, I just knew it was dad calling saying he had to work late it was already getting dark outside, Mom talk a few minutes before hanging up just looking at us. “Well are we going?” was all I could ask already knowing we weren’t. “Yes Your Father said he’s on his way home now”

Mom still not too happy with the whole idea but willing to go along with it just for us kids. Jamie my younger Sister and little Brother Joey were anxiously waiting jumping up and down quickly looking out the window, whenever a car went by then right back to the TV, darkness was just setting in with street light flickering among the bare trees branches.

If Dad didn’t hurry soon we might just have to wait and leave first thing in the early morning. There they were the lights pulling into the driveway “Dad’s Home’ Dad’s Home” Jamie keep hollering outward and Joey joining right in jumping from the couch window and running to the door to meet him.

Mom put a few bags on the table as I watch thouse two jumping around if they were dogs they knock him over when he opens that door, The door slowly open an even before he could get a foot in the door the excitement’ rush him.

“Ok, OK”

“Are we leaving tonight dad?”

“Why not it’s, not that Late”

Jumping around rushing gather up their stuff; empty snack plates taken into the kitchen, Jamie washed them off while, I had to dry them why did they even use them if we were leaving, but I left it alone and just hurry drying them putting them away. Joey sat at the table watching dad wolfing down a warm cup of coffee while buttoning his clean shirt. Joey being only eight didn’t have much to do that’s why he has an older brother and sister for! According to him, and most of the time he got away with it to, Moms view he was too young for harder work.

Frank (Dad’s) an­ticipation hitched the Station wagon up the night before with everything pack in its place ready to go, it sure didn’t take long everyone climbed into the wagon, house lights already set on timers, Jamie of course first one in the wagon seating in the back with the cooler, Blanket’s and pillow’s on top.  Joey rush in the driver side rear; he always gets next to the win­dow, Now me it didn’t matter as long as it wasn’t in the center.

Rumbling of the old wagon warming up just a little louder being lower to the ground, it’s bottom hitch scrapping a little out the driveway. Mom sat pulling her sweater closed looking over the map with the vizier lamp. Dad couldn’t drive without having coffee to go, although he wolf down three cups before we left the house, inevitability pulling into the fast food place just before the interstate.  Slowly moving under the Drive thru window area hoping it wouldn’t scrape, Dad ordered for everyone not asking what we wanted, no that was one think we all knew he sure wouldn’t dare to say anything mostly reflecting upon past arguments on trips. Dads way, or the trip was canceled.

Both up front looking over the map in-between bites, knowing full well it would be at least three or more hours to reach the campground area in the dark of night, quickly finishing with their meal’s.  Joey, quickly taking everything around grabbing what you could before he got it, cramming and pushing any empty papers into the bag, he had trash detail going up’ without argument he was told about it from Dad before we left.

Taking the bag to the trash container for Joey’ mostly to hurry us up, Jamie and Joey climbed in the back before we even left the parking lot, Dad turn on the small light in the back for them  so they could play cards not getting to load that it would bother him, pulling out an right on the interstate we were on our way and it was dark out lights behind us as we change lanes into the center were dad like to drive on trips saying it was the best place to drive. Sitting next to the window enjoying the full seat watching the roadside every now and then; Farm houses off in the distance, showing some lights, a short while later Jamie and Joey collapse out in the back, Joey holding his teddy bear next to his side.

Too excited just watching the roadway ahead my arms across the back of the front seat leaning over it with a little small talk with dad. Mom fell asleep leaning on the door, It seemed like hours went by of just roadway and car tail lights. Checking every billboard that came and went, pointing to one dad looked it over slowing down just a little; showing the Campground only a couple exits more and they would be there.

The exit came on to them raptly Dad almost missed the exit, slowly creeping along looking for the campground with a few turns while following little signs along the edge of the roadway, Through the tall Trees appearing in front of them excited seeing A large sign to the left of the gateway entering to the campground.

(Welcome to YELLOW JACKET Camping Resort’ In-joy your stay) With its tall trees cascading over the top almost like going thru a tunnel, lights from the wagon casting a view among the tree branches. Even the dashboard seem brighter, almost scary like waiting for some­thing to jump out from the trees, a large log cabin with a Yellow light next to the door, under the light a sign (Office). Shamrock signs over the gas pumps next to the cabin. 


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