My Supernatural World


ghost-forest

 Coming from a family that always had a ghost story to tell I grew up not only intrigued by the paranormal and supernatural I would even say I also dabbled in it a little from time to time as I got older.

As a child it seemed like every adult I knew, especially that one aunt of mine (you know who you are!) did their best to scare me out of my skin every time I turned around. There always seemed to be a room with a doll being pulled by fishing thread slowly and terrifyingly across the room or the many tales of ghosts leaving footprints behind or the curious rattling in my grandmother’s kitchen that was so loud that every living soul was awakened from sleep to give testament of the occurrence; coincidentally these incidents always seem to come up just before one of those inevitable sleep overs at Nan’s house. My mom and at least one of my other aunts “read cards” for people they knew, like tarot cards but with a plain deck of cards. I always begged for her to read mine, but mom always told me “you can’t read children cards” I’m not sure where all this interest in the occult came from on my mom’s side of the family but it was definitely there.

Coming from the East coast of Canada the bright summer nights allowed us plenty of sunlight and long days. As a child of the seventies all of our free “play” time was spent outside as there was nothing to do inside and the outside world had plenty of overturned rocks to roast marshmallows on; when it did get dark at night it was like a scene from any creepy movie ever made. The absence of streetlights cast dark shadows on every street corner between my grandmother’s house and my own, and besides the shadows the depth of darkness in between the houses left me guessing at the many horrors that might possibly lurk within, waiting to swallow me whole. The short ten minute walk home would quickly become a fast five minute run when the sun fell below the water’s edge around the small island I grew up on.

Throughout my childhood I often heard of the stories how other extended family members experimented with séances, Ouija’s boards and many other things. I knew to keep quiet about these things in our family as we were raised in a Catholic upbringing so you can imagine why it was a hush, hush thing. Our family moved when I was twelve years old leaving behind the island however the stories remained with me as did my memory of having our house blessed by the local priest for who knows what as my mom was pretty tight lipped about many things back then.

Some of the common ghost folklore on the island included tales of a White Woman, a vengeful, beautiful ghost who would haunt anyone after dark, her long flowing white gown floating high in the air above everyone; I dared not look up at night, and of course let’s not forget the Fairies. I remember feeling terrified a fairy would grab me when reaching into the neighbors patch of rhubarb to snap off a sweet ripened branch to chew, sadly this was a regular treat for me as a child and one I could not resist as the secondary reward was a new rhubarb hat for my successful venture. I’m certain as a child I thought “I bet some fairies sneaked aboard those boats with my grandfather” who immigrated from Ireland back in the early 1900’s; everyone knew Ireland was full of fairies and leprechauns.

As I grew older I still hung on to some curiosity about the occult but mostly it dwindled down to a pack of expensive tarot cards in my twenties that I never did learn to read, I guess I didn’t have “the gift” my mom had when it came to reading cards, God knows I tried. I also tossed my money too much out to money out to promising fortune tellers, palm readers and physics during my twenties and thirties in search of something profound, which I did not find. They all seemed fake and nothing more than a bunch of entertainers looking for a quick buck, no one with the real gift I longed to witness. Not until my second son was born that is.

By the time my baby was able to muster together his first sentence just before he was two years old; one thing that stood out most was his incredible desire to tell me about the “man” who lived in our basement crawlspace; terrifying yes!  It didn’t stop there either as for the next six months the toys cackled in the corners turned on by invisible hands as new sounds crept inside the rooms in our home  proving loud and clear that we were not alone! No these sounds were not from those that lived inside, these sounds were from somewhere else. When my son was able to put a few more words together and form a longer sentence I taught him to scream down the basement stairs “man this is my home go away”, we practiced this every time he seen the “man”. He would come screaming “the man, the man” leaping onto my lap stuffing his golden brown tussled curly hair deep under my secure armpit as he trembled. I too shook from the fear of the unseen man; it seemed whenever my son pointed to the location of “the man”  the invisible entity appeared to move closer and closer  from our downstairs crawlspace to directly behind my screaming two year old on our main level living room area one night. My son’s sightings of the man seemed to last for about six months , stopped for about three, and again for another few months eventually the sightings stopped. I was sort of relieved when a new play friend my son called “Mister Nobody” came around shortly after. Mister Nobody stayed in our attic where he would come down and play with my son and sometimes take the blame for misplaced items around the house but it was fairly non scary stuff, Thank God! I thought whether Mister Nobody is really or an imaginary friend I dont care, just dont be scary.

By the time my child was five years old a move from our house to a new apartment began to stir up a whole other mixture of excitement and activity which one might call paranormal activity.  The whispers in the vents at night from Mister Nobody who apparently left the attic from the old house and now followed us to  our new place months later whispered through the vents to my son and once told him “love her, take care of her.” I began to wonder if this was his guardian angel or something. Soon things changed again and  my son began telling me how he was witnessing many different forms of ghosts just walking around our house, usually quietly floating in and out of the walls, some transparent, some dark shadows and one who looked just like his brother. Of course as a mom I believed him , who wouldn’t as prior to him being this five year old seeing ghosts I remembered only too clearly the two year old he was that experienced this same phenomenon. I knew in my heart of hearts he had no way of even comprehending what a ghost was before he was two and neither did I really. His gift of seeing those who have passed was not just his experience alone as these seeing occurrences were also followed by strange noises and other disturbances in our house, like the TV and stereo coming off and on by themselves and much more.  Someone at my workplace knew a renown radio host who claimed to be a medium. I called her she told me my son was a medium as she was, she also called him an “indigo child.” her only advice was to be careful as all that he may see may not be good, and use Saint Micheal in case of emergencies, you know like when the small girl slide out from under his bed one night and smiled at him, yes Saint Micheal was called on then. She also told me to develop my own medium-ship so I could help him, “right who would do that, I was already terrified!”

Things have begun to quiet down in the last couple years after we had a couple of good scares, it would appear the smudging helps.

Boy do I have a few good ones of my own now to tell, maybe even some stories of my own emerging gift too, late bloomer I guess.

 😉

 

 

 

I shall not die this way..I am Canadian ehh !


Being Canadian I expect snow and ice in the winter, a lot of it; and rarely does it ever frighten me, till today that is. Things are now different, possibly forever as today I thought I was going to die, really die!

I was surprised to see snow when I went outside this morning to warm up my seventeen year old Toyota Corella; a small gas efficient, reliable beater whose tiny engine coughs and sputters even in -1 below weather. The new fallen snow perhaps the second or third dusting of winters breath so far this year as we have been getting a mild one in Ontario” as they would say. We had a green Christmas too which is not the norm but not a first for me having lived in Ontario since my late teens; winter here tends to be unpredictable and you never really know what to expect day to day.

I was running behind this morning, as usual, so I didn’t even have time for my five minutes of CP24. I hardly ever watch the news except in the morning to see what going on out there on the roads before I leave for work, however today I had no time. I remember reading someone’s post on Facebook last night about how the temperature would drop and how it was going to get cold overnight but I did not see anything about snow fall.

With no jacket I began to brush the foam like snow off my car,it was cold what was I thinking! I laughed a little as I thought to myself “get over it girl; you grew up in Labrador ehh! This is nothing!” I continued to brush off my car as I traveled back in my mind to my youth and thought about the thick snow covered roads and mountains of snow I would wake up to see as a child. Overnight the winds would howl and the frost always so thick on the windows you could not even see outside once the coldness reached November each year. I remember the frost thick inside the windowpanes as well as outside, crystallized beauty and creativity crackled in such a way only Mother Nature had the skill to create. As kids we would use out hot breath to carve out a small peep hole to try and see what was going on outside in hopes we had another snow day to look forward too. The wrath of winter often would result in high snow drifts blown up against every second story window of every house on my street, having to get shoveled out just to get to school. Yes I was born and bred a true Canadian accustomed to real winters having grown up in Newfoundland and Labrador, this really was nothing, “I must be getting old.”

Since leaving home at the age of eighteen I rarely have experienced a harsher winter than Labrador, unless going home for Christmas of course. Winter can be cold and yucky here too but to compare the two you would say Toronto (GTA) is the Florida of Canadian winters.

Already running late for work I thought about how the roads would add to my lateness; I grumbled under my breath, “what a horrible way to start of my Monday morning and my week”.

I have never been one of those nervous winter drivers, but I could tell as soon as I left my house and began driving that the roads were very slippery. My first guess was that no one must have known there would be snow today, it was like the salt trucks were not even out to salt the roads last night. I looked at the time again, “oh God I would be at least twenty minutes late for work, if not more.” I continued to drive carefully as I didn’t have any snow tires for my little car and hoped the main roads would be better.

Less than ten minutes after leaving home I approached an intersection, the light was turning from green to yellow so I pressed slightly down on my break to slow my car. I had been driving slow and cautious anyway but I could not feel any real traction beneath my tires, a true testament that the road was just as slippery as I thought. To my left I could see a tractor trailer barreling down the road towards the intersection, he was going fast, too fast! It was then I realized Oh my God I’m sliding! I pressed my foot down harder on the break as I continued to slide into oncoming traffic. The tractor trailer screamed closer and closer with no signs of slowing down. My mind flipped through all of the things I knew about sliding on ice, 1) turn into the slide “I could not do that I’m sliding forward!” 2) Do not press down on the breaks “I could NOT do that, I had to stop!” 3) Look in the direction that you want to go, “I couldn’t do that there was NO safe direction, I had to stoppppppppp!” Then I did the only thing I could do, I closed my eyes as tight as I could as I held on as hard as I could. In my mind all I could think is this kind of impact would not be survivable, not in my wee little car and not with his speed and size.”

I don’t remember seeing or even thinking anything else except “Oh My God, Oh God! People always say they see their life flash before their eyes when they think they will die; well I wonder if that’s true as today I only seen death flash before my eyes, not life.

My car was not moving anymore. I opened my eyes as the midsection of the tractor trailer whooshed past my car; the wind tunnel from the speed shook me. First thing I thought was Oh my God how is it even possible he missed me! I wondered if the driver even noticed my almost near death experience, maybe he moved over, I just dont know.” I sat there and all I could do was guesstimate the distance from my front end to that truck, “the truck could not have been more than two feet from me, yes really just two feet!”

I covered my eyes and felt the rush of emotion flood over me; I put my car into reverse and slowly backed up. I could see a car behind me but I still had to move back as I was still about three or four feet out into the intersection; still in shock to be alive.

I think it was only then that my life flashed before my eyes. I thought about how I woke up my oldest and told him how disappointed I was that he didn’t finish his chores last night, “wow I would have hated to leave this earth with those words as my last my words to him.”

As reality settled in I wanted to throw up, I wanted to go home and hide underneath my blankets and cry myself to sleep. I felt my eyes fill with tears as the car behind me nudged closer without a sound as if he knew or witnessed my near escape from the clutches of death. I turned on my clicker , then pushed on the gas slowly as I turned right heading down the road towards work, terrified yet thankful for my life. I wanted to go home but I knew I had to keep going; I had to go forward, no matter how hard.

I know today I faced almost certain death; I’m not sure how or why my car stopped sliding, or why that truck didn’t cream me! I also can’t help but wonder if it was my last call out that made the difference!  “God was that you again? Thanks a bunch!”

My shoulder hurts like hell, damn Canadian winters!

 

Written by: Corrina Leblond

Image :winter in CanadaWinter Photo (645104) – Fanpop

 

TIS SEASON – to give or not to give?


man

I dug deeply into the corners of my purse searching for spare change, just a toonie or loonie to pass through my window before the light changed green “come on purse!”

I knew in about three minutes the cars behind me would scream on their horns with discontent threaded with road rage in this angst that moves us along our hum drum catatonic road of life.

He stood there holding a sign that read in broken English, “hungry need money for food, wife dead, three children.”

Walking slowly to those cars lined up behind my car his expressionless face held some remnants of hope, hope that a hand of compassion would reach out to drop a coin for his cause; my car’s unwelcome window as many others was rolled up tight.

Second in line behind the light I dug faster as I watched him five cars down through my rear view mirror; the hand on the light flashed warning that the moment would soon pass. “Damn, not even an emergency grocery cart quarter!”

My purse was a usual disorganized mess of crumbs, old receipts and unused plastic point cards. “Why???? I usually have something!”

An epiphany came over me! My hand felt the smooth bills in the corner pocket of my purse; the 20’s I had withdrawn a few hours ago for our family’s weekly jar money , a new thing I was trying in hopes to keep us on track with our monthly spending.

I pulled out a twenty not even looking at my partner to see if he would agree or disagree. My guy knows when I have my mind made up I usually dig my heels in stubbornly; when I need to give I give.

I rolled down my window as the light began to change and yelled “sir, sir”, he was still at least 2 cars behind my car but I could see him walking back slowly in my rear view mirror. I held my arm out the window “sir!” yelling louder.

He appeared to the left of my window as the light changed, I had slowly begun to release my foot of the break. I smiled as I said “I couldn’t find any change but I hope a 20 will be okay!” He quickly stuffed the bill in his pocket not saying a word unlike most I give to who often murmur the seemingly grateful response of “God bless you.” No not a word from this man and not even a change in his facial expression. From his khaki pants and sweater I wondered if this may have been his first time on this highway corner.

No matter what his story I knew I did right by me and my heart felt good! Perhaps he did have kids to feed, and even if he didn’t “who am I to judge?”

I drove away with my kids unusually quiet in the back seat, my partner quiet beside me and a tear in my eye. I knew at that moment this was exactly what I was supposed to do and because I could, I felt blessed.

~

I have posted a video link below of a clip I watched a couple years ago. I also worked with one of the gentlemen in this video, Daniel Cullen a published author who had struggles with homelessness for many years; last I heard he was still facing many challenges. At the time I met Daniel he was working on bringing awareness to the public about the issues faced by those experiencing homelessness in the Brampton and Peel area where we both live; working with him was an eye opener to the issues in Peel. Ill never forget how he introduced me to the corners of support and sadness in the Brampton area. I never knew there were places like Regeneration whose team feed an amazing breakfast to everyone walking through their door on a daily basis just downtown Brampton. I also had the pleasure of serving at a Linda’s soup kitchen another spot I never knew of in Brampton working effortlessly to provide hot lunches to those in need. My heart still remembers my own poverty as a child and how I believe many of us could be just a few pay checks away from homelessness should our conditions change. Please watch this video and bring awareness to yourself and others if you can.

Image by:

Spaces & Places – Homelessness in Peel Part 1

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cesymDsCsP8

Today I wondered if God was listening!


(Trigger warning & strong language, yet a story I had to tell)

Just one more trip to the grocery store and my busy day would soon be met with some justified relaxation, ahhhh. Since midday today I was on a life high having recieved some great news. I couldn’t wait to get home so I could relax and sink into this new found happiness. The only thing left on my mind after work was celebrating; should it be a white wine or something special?

As I hurried through the mall parking lot a cab stopped by the mall entrance. I noticed the passenger, a mid thirty something female who almost tripped out of the cab’s back door when exiting.  She stood up after the near mishap adjusting her clothes over her slim figure. I thought she obviously must be in a much bigger hurry than I was as she quickly ran into the mall disappearing from my view. For one second my busy mind paused as I admired how tall and thin she was with her chic haircut that only a few people would ever dare to sport or look good in. Damn skinny people, my inner voiced chimed; they can wear or look good in anything!

My mind shifted back to my errands and the pizza order I had placed that would surely be cold as it was now more than an hour since leaving work late on another Friday night. It was my fault the family had become dependent on these Friday night takeouts, I take full responsibility for doing it one too many times as I will NOT cook on a Friday, they are all big now and can pitch in, or so I tell myself. In another alternate reality I fantasize about coming home to an amazing cooked meal with my family’s painted happy faces ushering me to the table after a hard day’s work, swooning over me as they take my bag and rush to caring for my every need (ha and then I wake up). Even when I say this in my head it sounds silly and preposterous! Meal times in my house seem to have become one of those “what’s mom cooking/bringing home” kind of homes, despite my proud feminist views.

I entered the mall and only seconds later my busy mind tuned into the yelling and screaming just ahead of me. As I was jilted from my own thoughts I noticed the screams were coming from the cab passenger who was screaming and walking in a fast pace towards where I had just entered the store.

She screamed “I told you, I fucking , fucking told you NOT TO MOVE, what the FUCK is wrong with YOU, why CANT you ever listen to a FUCKING word I say!!”

A notable gasp and cry came from the husky 10-12 year old boy as she wailed on him screaming just inches away from his face crouching over him, eyes bulging with a clear firm grasp of his shoulders. Her next words were inaudible to me as I think I went into shock, her words became a blur. For sure a threat of “if you do….then I will ….slap, hit” She continued on for a few more painful seconds.  I couldn’t help but feel like I was frozen in time as the air became so thick it was hard to move forward. She screamed a few more F bombs and her last words clear and cutting as she turned back to him yelling “DONT MOVE and stop your crying you FUCKING PUSSY!

Oh my dear God!!! What ???? I could not believe my ears; I’m now certain I was in shock. All I could think of was this poor, poor boy and ask myself who the hell is that person?

I found myself praying for him immediately asking God to come to his side and comfort him. As part of my religious upbringing praying still came easy as I also begged for angel Gabriel to come and cradle this child from this pain. I prayed that she wasn’t his mom, maybe an older sister, a crack head stepmother, anyone but please don’t let this be his everyday life! I’ve never ever heard anyone speak that abusive to a child before. I was stunned needless to say. I’ve heard a lot of verbal abuse in my time but never this much or with such contempt and language towards a child, and certainly never in a grocery store.

I noticed others in the store who had lined up for service had that same frozen look of disbelief on their face. I looked at the child as tears streamed down his cheeks and I wished I could just hug him. I stopped for just a second long enough to hear people around me beginning to rumble about how disrespectful she was, but no one moved towards the child. The cab passenger was just a couple of aisles ahead of me grabbing random items off the shelves, popping her head in and out not really even looking over. I wondered what anyone could even legally do in this situation, I was lost for what to do.

With my heart wrenching I could feel his sadness, my heart was breaking. I continued walking to the deli and paid for my pizza as the pain in my heart grew. I grabbed my pizza box and decided I would go speak to him, give him a word of encouragement, something, anything!

I headed back to where the child was determined to get his number, maybe just a name so I could call the police or child services.

To my sadness he was gone when I came back; I don’t know what happened to him or where he could be. Out of the corner of my eye I seen the cab passenger but this time she was alone, I wondered where the child was.

I left the mall with a huge lump in my throat and a nagging feeling that I should’ve done more. I drove home, my cold pizza beside me absent of the joy I had felt earlier. Tears filled my eyes as pain rushed into my heart thinking about what a shitty day that boy was having, maybe a shitty life, no one deserves that treatment!

I again said a prayer to God. I asked for help for the child and asked God to help him through his journey as I know I was comforted many times in my life. Still this wasn’t enough to ease my guilt; I slowed my car I wanted to turn back. I know somehow this was a bit crazy of me, or was it? I just wanted to DO SOMETHING. But again I decided to go home and drop off the food for my family.

When I got in the door I spilled out my story to anyone who would listen and asked my partner to come to the mall with me so we can find the boy. He was on the phone and half heartedly listened as my kids grabbed the food and the dog hopped with excitement hoping for just one bite of fallen pepperoni. Yes I was back in my life now, but part of me was still with the boy.

My 13 year old pulled out three math tests he was prouder than proud of, his face beamed with excitement as he showed me three A’s, one that was an A+, first one of the year. This was a special moment, I wished I could’ve been happier and more involved, but I was still with the boy.

My mind consumed with guilt and images of the child in the mall. I still didn’t know what to do, even if I went back to the mall he may be gone or sitting with her. What COULD I really do? What should I have done? Why didn’t I do anything?

I felt so sad, I tried to smile at my son and give him the attention he deserved but I could not get that image of the pain and embarrassment on that other child’s face out of my mind. His sadness haunted me as I reflected on my own pain as a child. He will grow up one day, it will get better, I comforted myself.

I knew that no matter what he wasn’t really truly alone, none of us are. God is with him, even if he didn’t have God as part of his upbringing as I did.

My younger son hugged me and shared with me what he does when he feels like I was feeling, “mom you know what I do when I wish I couldn’t done something and didn’t, I ask God to forgive me”. His words touched and surprised me, wow!

I knew immediately that was the answer. “Give it to God” a friend once told me. I humbly asked for forgiveness and hoped this would be enough.

My spiritual journey doesn’t always involve a church, but it always has involved God, a side effect of being raised in a religious home.

There were no celebrations that night but refreshed awareness that for every joy we have someone somewhere is suffering, too real a reminder, I counted my blessings.

I am blessed for so many reasons, and blessed most of all to be so lucky to have such a wise child who offered me the comfort that I only now truly appreciate as an adult, Gods comfort.

Written by: Corrina Leblond

THE MONK WHO TAUGHT ME TO ROW


monk 2

Fingering through the Sunday bulletin I almost choked on my coffee as the Ministers voice faded while I read through the upcoming events section of the weekly church handout.

Coming soon, Learn to Meditate with a Buddhist Monk, Mondays 6pm.

Having been raised a strict Irish Catholic I was in shock. More shocking this news was in a Christian church bulletin!

What paralleled my astonishment was deep excitement. The many years of Catholicism burrowed deep under my skin jeering negative thoughts such as; Am I not at church? Who approved this?My grandmother’s voice also echoed in the  furthest corner of my mind as I imagined her rolling in her grave. The rules I grew up with were simple; “stay away from them dirty Protestants up the road, do not worship false Gods.”

With my amazement and shock behind me I was excited to read about the upcoming meditation classes. I always longed for more understanding and connection with what I tend to define as my own unique spirituality. I’ve never considered myself religious, too many rules.

Buddhism was not new to me. Just seeing it printed on a Christian church’s bulletin was.

I once attended a full day meditation in the park with a renowned Buddhist monk. Aside from my butt going numb from sitting all day I did find some useful techniques that allowed me to incorporate more variety in my attempt to establish a daily meditative practice.

My next thought shouted defiantly inside my head “I’m going!”

The church looked different at night. The dark window panes mirrored recent images of the lively Sunday afternoon worship. I imagined each seat releasing a puff of an embedded music note as each person sat down.

Walking closer to the front of the church I was startled by a very happy monk who bopped out of nowhere and gave me an uncomfortable full body hug. She pressed her almost fully shaven head hard against my bosom, ugh!

Everyone’s attention turned to the back of the room as I attempted to shake off the shock I felt from the unwelcome squeeze.

A much older gentleman shuffled lazily towards the front of the church where a hard wood chair awaited. Without making eye contact, he floated past everyone silently. He sat down and gazed sleepily at the rows of eager meditation students just a few feet in front of him.

Even though his words did not come immediately, I imagined when words did come they would be as slow and as purposeful as his walk to his uncomfortable seat was.

Words softly rippled from his lips as he broke the silence and talked about mindfulness and keeping our thoughts hushed opposed to singing out what so ever was on our mind, like his favourite song “Row Your Boat”.

“Row, Row, Row your boat gently down the stream, merrily merrily, merrily life is but a dream”.

His words hummed with rhythm as he told his story pausing in between each sentence for the added drama.

Row your boat, your boat, no one else’s.

How to do it? Well do it gently and with ease, doing your best to stay happy and merry, not thrashing about.

For what we all know to be true is; life really is “but a dream”.

I did not immediately absorb his words about this childhood song, I smiled inside at his eccentric manner and delivery.

I got home and found myself asking questions to my family as I usually did. Did you do this? Have you called so and so? Do you know when you will? Then it hit me!

OMG! I’m rowing their boats!!

I considered how less stressful my life could be if I just rowed my own boat .

Those three simple words would be sketched into my every day thereafter. Who could have though a simple story could change my way of thinking about this life, it did.

I now only do my very best to row my own boat.

Well mostly.

Written by: Corrina Leblond

moonshine

MY NEW BIKE


bb

Most days you would find me floating on a daydream, but not this day!

I carefully cut each straw “this must be what it feels like to be the coolest kid on the block”.

I stopped for a minute to think about how I ached for long shimmery tassels for my handle bars; much like I pained for long hair so I could flick it from side to side. I comforted myself “those tassels were really no big deal, soon I would have a bike and THAT was a big deal“.

If we cut it , it will grow in thicker“. My mom’s words always whispered silently beneath my fingers as I reached up and patted my short bowl cut hairstyle, “when I grow up, I’ll never cut it again“!

It was a beautiful fall day, in a distance Dickey’s rusted pick up truck rumbled loud as it neared, thoughts of my wheels decorated with colorful straws clicking round and round in a swirl of colours began my heart racing.

I had never owned a bike, I was 9 years old this would be my first one. Truth is, it was one of my cousins hand me down banana bike with no brakes, but I didn’t care, it was new to me.

Mom yelled out the window “Now you better be careful young lady!”
The clank of dishes echoed in the back ground.

Within minutes I grasped the handle bars and with a run an’ hop I sped away without even looking back, “Mothers”!

I was a tomboy in those days; I didn’t care that the bike had no brakes; I had feet, feet were all I needed to stop.

Windswept leaves danced about my heels as I rode on the sunken, cracked road in front of my house, cool autumn wind whipped thin strands of my hair in and out of my eyes as I tried to keep my bike balanced.

Behind my every effort to practice stopping, a large dust cloud trailed.

My first ride was to my grandmothers. I carefully pressed my feet to the ground, the bottom of my feet burning, bouncing from the gravel. I imagined igniting the tall grass with a blast of fire from my shoes,  yes feet worked!

The sun low, perched slightly above the cliff’s edge hinted I had better get home fast; or there would be hell to pay.

I rode fast and hard and as I walked (always in the middle of the road) I now rode my bike the same.

The road back was dirt and gravel , the connecting paved roads not repaired in years. The streets seemed hillier, the early night shadowed my long strides up the small hill.

As I got closer to my house, a car came out of nowhere!

I jerked my handlebars to one side as I felt my tires skid and slide on a small patch of broken road, chunks of asphalt smashed against my ankles.  Last thing I remember I was airborne.

I woke up with my mom gently brushing impacted pebbles from my forehead, a few people stood around us. Laying at the side of the road I felt a familiar warmth of blood trickling into my eyes as I witnessed the look of horror on my mom’s face, the same look I’ve seen before.

Yes I was the tomboy, always breaking something or getting stitched. This time the cut was deep not bad though, first time I ever got taped instead of stitched.

What a day!

I never did see that banana bike again.

Written by : Corrina Leblond

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