There Will Be Mud: A True Life Kid Story

posted in: Family, Story 9
Awwww, yeah.
Awwww, yeah.

One day on Meadowlark Farm, my sister Nan and decided to get out into the timber for awhile. It was late enough into spring that stuff was thawing. There was a lot of mud out in the field between our farmhouse and the timber, and this was annoying. We were slightly feral, but we were also girls. Getting dirty was never the aim of our adventures; our adventures were the aim.

We put on our lighter snowsuit-overall-things, at Mom’s request. It was still cold and these would keep us warm, keep some mud off our clothes, and protect our little bodies from the burrs and pokey sticks out in the forest. We grudgingly put them on, followed by our galoshes. And we set out.

I’m sure we had fun, but I don’t remember what we did. I only remember that when we came back through the mud field to go home for lunch or dinner, something terrible happened.

Hannah (Nan) fell into a mud pit.

I’m telling you, that girl sank into a mud pit of Neverending Story proportions. She went down and she went deep, at least to her waist. Since we were small, the mud pit couldn’t have been that deep, but for a ten-year-old, a waist-high mud pit is a helluva mud pit.

“MARY!!!!” she screamed. I was 20 paces or so ahead of her when this happened. “MARY!!! HELP ME!!!”

I whirled around to see half my sister, flailing around in the mud. It’s so interesting to me to think what I must’ve said. I know what I’d say today, but at that age, I didn’t know those sorts of words.

“MARY!!!!” my sister kept screaming. “MARY! GET OVER HERE! HELP ME!!” and assessing the situation, I determined she really did need help. Her boots were totally, completely stuck and was she sinking further into the mud? Yeah, she was. Yikes.

I decided that this was definitely an emergency situation, but that I was definitely not going to help her myself. It wasn’t logical! I was smaller than she was! What was I gonna do? Pull my older sister out of a sucking mud pit with the power of my six-year-old will? I knew that if I gave my sister my hand, sloop! down I’d go into the mud, too, and at the time, I only came up to her waist, so I’d be totally drowned in mud. Hell, no. I wasn’t going down like that. I had cookys to eat.

“I gotta go home,” I said, a little scared at how my decision would land with my big sister.

There was a pause in the flailing. “WHAT??!!!”

“I gotta go home!” I yelled, and my eyes got real big as my sister understood that she was totally screwed. The expression on her face, even from 20 paces away, made it clear that if she was able to survive this mud pit problem, I was in serious trouble. As I ran away, I contemplated hiding places.

“MARY!” I heard her screaming, “I CAN’T BELIEVE YOU!”

“I gotta go home!” I yelled again, and what I meant was, “I gotta go home for help,” but this wasn’t being communicated properly, so Hannah just sent daggers shooting out of her eyes into my back and I ran as fast as my little feet could carry me, out of the mud field, onto the gravel road, into the yard, and up onto the porch of the house.

When I told her what had happened, my mother looked out the kitchen window and saw her eldest child flapping around in a pink coat, far, far out in the muddy field.

“Oh, Mary!” she cried, and we went out and retrieved Hannah. She was fine. A little muddy. Furious at me, of course, but my point was made. A smaller person cannot retrieve a bigger person from a sucking mud pit. Mom could help, I could not.

This is crucial decision-making.

 

 

9 Responses

  1. Andres
    | Reply

    She’ll get you back for this. One day.

  2. Becky M
    | Reply

    Hilarious and so representative of sisters. 🙂 And thanks for the Neverending story memories! “ATREYU!!”

  3. Bobbie
    | Reply

    A similar thing happened to my cousins and myself (too many years ago to count) on an Easter Sunday in central North Dakota.
    I was the one to go after help because I was wearing my Easter Sunday best clothes and didn’t go into the mud. I remember how panicked we all felt. My uncles went out calmly, threw a rope to my cousins and rescued them!! 🙂

  4. Molly
    | Reply

    As a younger sister I can totally relate to this story. Thanks for the smile today 🙂

  5. Mary Ann
    | Reply

    Such a vivid picture you painted for us! And glad your theory worked out right. Lol

  6. Kathi Kraftyzales
    | Reply

    Oh wow!
    Brought back a big sister memory.
    We we walking down a road, returning home from our grandfather’s home, and I was talking to my sis. All of a sudden she disappeared from sight. I freaked and yelled for her. She screamed at me from the ditch she had fallen into. I can’t stop laughing…….it’s too freaking funny!!!!!!!
    I too was smaller and couldn’t pull her out of the ditch.
    So the prissy “can’t get dirty or wrinkled” princess had to claw her way up the side.
    Seriously, I can’t catch my breath. Still makes me laugh 55 years later.

  7. Vera
    | Reply

    Mary- Loved your story, Mary! You brought back memories.

    I lived in Iowa as a kid and our little town on the side of a large hill was on gravel roads. We had record snows the winter of 61 and when it thawed in the spring, the water drained down to the south edge of town, making the largest mud hole in memory. The men in town dumped railroad ties and other large things in the hole, but there was nothing to do but wait for it to dry out. The school buses could not run that route and some of the other routes out of town. So, we had ‘mud day’ vacation from school for a couple of days. Most of the farmers got their kids into town by the end of the second day and we had school again with slumber parties at various homes in town so that we could have school the rest of the week. Iowa mud strikes again!
    Vera

  8. Hano
    | Reply

    My coat was *blue,* thankyouverymuch.

    (…daggers!!)

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