Around the Corner

I was about twelve years old when I almost got kidnapped.

I was playing with the neighbors two doors down. We had found a stick big enough to be a walking stick. For whatever reason, I started walking around the block using the new found walking stick. I’d just turned the corner when I felt someone or something following me. I looked to my left and saw a car slowed down to a crawl with a Hispanic man looking at me intensely. I thought he wanted to ask for directions or for the time so I stopped and walked to the edge of the grass.

“Can I give you a ride home?”

Cold fear froze me. “I don’t need a ride, I just live right around the corner.”

“I just need to give you a ride, it’s a long way.”

“No, I don’t need a ride, I don’t live far from here.”

“Who is that?”

I turned around. One of the boys that I’d been spending time with that day had followed me around the corner. I don’t know why he decided to follow me, but I felt grateful that he decided to that day.

“My neighbor.”

I don’t remember what he said, or if he drove off. The next thing I remember is my neighbor and I walking back home.

“You need to tell your parents. Have them call the police.”

“You come with me. Help me tell the story.”

“No.”

I eventually got home alone and I eventually got the courage to tell them what happened. My parents were shocked. We live in a good neighborhood, a quiet one. Why would a suspicious man come around here to jeopardize the kids? My dad immediately said we needed to call the police.

When a cop came by he asked me to tell the story and show me how I was walking. I don’t know why it mattered how I walked at the time because the man in the old beat up car was still trying to take me no matter what.

The police man said he’d drive around the block, see if he can find him. The man wasn’t found and I never saw him around ever again. For a year or so, I didn’t want to walk around that block in fear of seeing him again. I went a different way. I’m so glad that my neighbor decided to follow me that day. Who knows what would have happened to me or if I would have been alive.

Yes or no.

There is a choice I have to make:

Yes or no.

What answer should I choose? Which one will make me happy? Which one is correct? Is there even a correct one out there? But what if I’m wrong?

I am immobile.

I don’t like making decisions. Mainly because of this.

I tell them I need some time.

Is that okay?

I take some time. I weigh the options. I go back and forth.

I make one decision.

Then I change my mind, make another. This is so hard. How do people decide?

The time is up, I make the best choice in my mind. I go back and tell them what I’ve decided. There’s no going back now.

I hope I didn’t make a mistake.

Of Pets and Neighbors.

We have a neighbor who is 88 years old. She’s decided all of a sudden that she wants to have a little dog. Of course she’s old enough to decide what she wants to do with her life, but we’ve also been hesitant about her having one. She’s a little unsteady on her feet and has some memory problems. We’re afraid that the dog will get tangled up in her feet and make her fall and break a bone or something. Her sister’s dog did that to her not so long ago, so it’s not entirely implausible. Not to mention that she might not remember when the last time the dog was let out to use the restroom.

But I think her son is going to come back to Ohio soon after he retires and help her find a dog. It’ll probably end up being more of my dog than her dog, since I’ll be the one walking it and making sure it uses the restroom. And feeding it, probably. I don’t mind as much since I like dogs and everything, but I’m more worried that it’s going to unintentionally make her fall.

I just hope that whatever dog she chooses is already housebroken and has a calm demeanor. Otherwise we’re going to have some problems. But it’s her money in the end and she’ll spend it how she wishes. At least I get to be part owner of the dog in a sense?

Do the Olympics Mean Hope?

So the Olympics are over.

I didn’t watch too much of them. In fact I didn’t start watching them until the week before the closing ceremonies and only for a couple hours or so. I’m not big on the summer Olympics (and sports in general) so I wasn’t interested in watching a whole lot of them. I did watch some swimming (mainly for Phelps) and some gymnastics and running. But then I got bored and stopped watching them.

And then I watched the closing ceremonies. The opening and closing ceremonies are the only things that I’m really interested in and I didn’t watch much of the opening ceremonies this year because I thought they were boring (personal preference, I know there’s some out there who genuinely liked it). I thought the closing ceremonies were interesting. Not the greatest, but not the worst either. I liked what the Brazilian guy said about how these Olympic games have done a lot of good for the country and hopes that it will continue to expand its weight in the global community and do much more for the community.

And I hope so, for their sake. It’s no secret that South and Latin American countries have struggled economically and socially. They’re almost as bad as some African countries in some instances. I’d like to see some Western hemisphere countries other than the United States and Canada succeed on a global scale. Get rid of corruption and trafficking and improve themselves.

I was never into Brazil as a country, meaning I had no interest to go there, but I do want to go to some other South American countries and practice Spanish. It’s such a beautiful language and I want to be able to speak it fluently. I don’t think I’d get that as much in Brazil since they mostly speak Portuguese, but having the Olympics there gives me hope for them all.

I probably don’t make sense, but there it is. I just write whatever comes to mind and that’s what came out today. Did any of you watch the Olympics? What’s you’re favorite sport?

On My Bucket List.

I think it’s safe to say that most of us have lists of things that we’d like to do before we die. Places to visit, books to read, exotic foods to try, extreme things that we wouldn’t have tried to do before. I have to say that the last couple of years or so I was able to cross some things off my list. I’m a little slow in completing my bucket list items but at least I try to finish at least one thing a year (usually).

The following are some things that I’d like to cross off my list. Let’s see if we have similar things to cross off, you and I, shall we?

  1. Visit Alaska.
  2. Jump out of a plane.
  3. Go/learn scuba diving.
  4. Learn ballroom dancing.
  5. Bike from one town to another.
  6. Swim with sharks.
  7. Write a book.
  8. Get a story published.
  9. Meet a famous author. (I did this once this year, but I’d like to meet one I like more)
  10. Start a YouTube Channel.
  11. Learn the mandolin or fiddle.
  12. Get another dog.
  13. Go out on a fancy date with someone. Nice dinner, go to a theater show afterwards.
  14. See a comedy show.
  15. Go on a haunted tour.

So what are some things that you’d like to cross off your bucket list? Let me know in the comments below!

Also, I guess I did this challenge earlier in the week but didn’t realize it was part of the Discover challenge. Sooo….two for the price of one! Go check it out, Things I Like.

Things I Like.

We seem to focus on the negative rather than the positive. And after (re?) discovering the blog Things We Like, I decided to make a list of my own concerning the things I like.

  1. Soaking my feet on the back porch.
  2. On rainy days, sitting in semi darkness without the big light on listening to spooky stories on YouTube or reading.
  3. Coloring, any day, but also on rainy days.
  4. Driving on country roads at 7:30 in the morning.
  5. Snuggle in the corner of the house when I’m home alone.
  6. Visiting old cemeteries.
  7. Having picnics in state parks.
  8. Capturing a pretty picture.
  9. Going on drives without music, just my surroundings.
  10. Actually watching an Olympic athlete as they win the gold with a world record instead of hearing about it after the fact.
  11. Have someone hold the door open for me.
  12. Being asked out on a date instead of vice versa or when I haven’t been on a date in a while.
  13. Snuggled on the couch with someone watch a movie.
  14. Long walks.
  15. Cookie dough ice cream.

Assimilation.

I saw a group of mentally disabled people today. (Is mentally disabled politically correct these days? I have no idea.) Don’t get me wrong, I’ve seen a lot of different kinds of mental disorders in my semi-short life, but these people had the kinds of illnesses that you would see on horror shows like American Horror Story. And they were so excited to be going out on an adventure.

And it made me sad, you know? It made me sad that we ostracize the severe illnesses. We take their suffering and characterize them on different shows just to give us a jump or a creepy crawly feeling underneath our skins. I can’t say anything, I enjoy watching a horror movie if it’s tasteful, but why do we only see mental illness as something scary in a horror show? Mental hospitals were scary back in the day and a good backdrop for a little jump scare, especially when you know that a person can be locked up and tortured just for breaking society’s rules. I get it, I do. But maybe we need a little more variety? Assimilate those people who are a little different from us, show us that they’re not creepy people?

Because really, if the only time we see these mental illnesses is in horror shows, how can we be more accepting? I’m not here to bash the horror shows that take place in asylums because I’m not. Maybe we can acknowledge the funness of being creeped out by a corrupt hospital and feel sad for those people in the past, but maybe force ourselves to go out and spend time with these people. Think about why seeing the quirks and physical oddities of the mentally challenges freak us out and make us feel uncomfortable.

Because it does make us feel uncomfortable. Seeing something strange makes us feel that way. But if we see it more often and spend time with them more often, we won’t be so creeped out?

Obviously, being around them all the time isn’t for everyone. I’ve seen people get really frustrated at people who don’t quite understand or get it because they want them to get it the first time. But they can’t.

I don’t know what I’m trying to say here. Maybe what I’m trying to say is that we should be more understanding and willing to accept that there are people who aren’t normal in the way we think normal should be. That some people take longer to understand, that some people need extra help and companionship. And that we shouldn’t be frightened by what we don’t understand.