This morning I unearthed a story I wrote when I was probably ten or eleven. Back story: when we all still lived at home, my dad bought a big yellow school bus, and together with my brothers, converted it into a custom motor home, just right for taking all nine of us to Costa Rica and back in a trip spanning five months. It was the adventure of a lifetime, complete with walking to church in gumboots because it was so muddy, staying at millionaires’ houses overlooking San Jose, push starting the bus way back in the boonies of San Manuel when it didn’t want to leave the charming little town, throwing hard tortillas like frisbees into the chasm beside the road to San Sebastian, “female hornets”, and so, so much more.
This particular story I wrote when we were doing the three week drive down the west coast of Mexico. The bus had no AC, and when it was moving we survived quite well, but there were some pretty miserable nights with the combination of heat and mosquitoes. As you can see, even back then my writing style was on point, complete with all the different variations of “said” and the little moral at the end that Rod & Staff taught me so well. 😀 Without further ado, here it is, with very minor edits.
Misery in Mexico
“Oh dear me!” groaned Rachel, “You stink Rosie!”
“I know I do,” Rosie replied as she slapped at a mosquito for the hundredth time. “I need my monthly shower quite badly.”
“OK,” Dad shouted above the din. “Who’s ready to stop for supper and the night? I think this town would be a good place.”
“Me!” “Me!” “Me!” came a chorus of voices.
“I’m so sick of this dirty bus and mosquitoes and heat and-” Rachel complained.
“O shut up.” Rosie commanded. “Maybe tonight we can get a room in a motel beside the ocean. Maybe we’ll have comfortable beds and be able to shower! Won’t that be nice?”
“Yeah,” Rachel agreed, “But it’ll cost too. Maybe Rhoda will be willing to pay for one room for all of us. Rhoda, would you be willing to do that?”
“Actually I was planning on it. Maybe we could take a mat from the bus to our room so that we’d all fit.”
“Yay,” Rosie and Rachel exclaimed together. “I’m so glad!”
After supper in the bus the girls climbed the steps to their room. “I…can’t…wait…for a…comfortable…bed.” Rosie panted.
“OK here we are, girls,” Rhoda said as she turned the knob.
“O look,” Rhoda exclaimed, “There’s no mosquito net. Well, I suppose we can survive without one. We sleep without them in the bus.”
“I’m first for the shower!” Rosie crowed.”Rachel did you bring that mat? OK then good.”
After all the girls had showered, they walked outside to take a look at the ocean. “O wow, it’s very loud! It sounds angry!” remarked Rachel.
“OK, time for bed now.” Rhoda herded them back to the room.
Soon everyone was in bed. “I think that the motel owner needs to wash her sheets more often,” Rosie stated. “These are very musty!”
Soon the lights were turned off but then the dreaded zzzz filled the room.
“All of the mosquito clan prefers this room tonight.” “Hey you get off of me! I’m not your friend.” The girls moaned. “Oh it’s so hot but if I don’t use my sheets, these mosquitoes are unbearable.”
All of a sudden there was a thud as Rosie’s feet hit the floor. She flicked the light on. “C’mon girls let’s slap these creauturs [sic] for a while. Soon the girls crawled back into their beds.
“Oh Rachel, I forgot, you can use my bed. These sheets are just too musty!” Rosie exclaimed.
After the girls were settled, the only sounds to be heard were the whine of mosquitoes, the roar of the ocean, and occasional slappings.
“Oh I can’t sleep,” Rhoda moaned. “The mosquitoes, the loud ocean, and the heat are almost unbearable.”
After a few more slapping sessions the girls finally fell asleep at 3:00 A.M.
The next morning dawned. “Oh my Rachel. You look like you have the chicken pox!” Rhoda exclaimed.
“Actually, it’s mosquito bites. And you know what else? The boys slept fine in the bus. Here we paid all this money for a miserable night!”
“I guess ‘Godliness with contentment is great gain’!” Rosie remarked.
That was based on a true story, except I seem to have omitted the part about the guy in the next room over smoking weed and the smoke drifting into our room over the top of the bathroom wall in the middle of the night. I also portrayed my sisters in quite the light, I must say, but I promise, they aren’t actually whiny or bossy. 😀 Artistic liberties at age eleven, I guess.