Discovery Toy Adventure

I've often wondered why such strange things happen to me.  Sure, I know sometimes I can bring them on myself, but there are those things that happen "just because."  Here's a little story about one of those times.
&n bsp;
When my daughter, Heather, was in her first year of high school, I was in my first (and last) year of selling Discovery Toys.  For those of you who don't already know, these are more than just your average toys.  They are fantastic educational toys that have value for children from birth through adulthood. 
 &l t;/div>
I did one of these toy demonstrations that year in Conway, New Hampshire.  One of the women that attended had a sister in Vermont, who really wanted to have a party of her own.  So, I called her and set an appointment for two weeks later on a Saturday morning.  Since the drive was about two hours, I arranged to stay at her home the night before in order to be there and ready for her 10:00 a.m. gathering.
&a mp;nbsp;
I asked my daughter if she would like to go with me, and she jumped at the chance.  It was winter, of course, and very cold.  The roadways were clear; however, there was snow piled up alongside the roads all the way to Vermont.  Most of the drive was paved highway, but once inside the little town where my demonstration was to be held, the roads became snow-packed and narrow.
& nbsp;
The woman (I'll call her Nancy) had provided me with great directions, and I was pleased that we found our way so easily.  No sooner had that thought crossed my mind when we took the last road in the directions.  When I say it was black on this road, I am not exaggerating.  We couldn't see light beyond what was provided by my headlamps.  But, after all, Nancy had said that I would go down a country dirt road for several miles before reaching her house.  Three miles on dirt road is a long ways.  Wouldn't you agree?  Now add ice and snow to the mix.  Miserable!!
& amp;nbsp;
Nan cy had described it in great detail.  It would be a two-story log home.  There would be a porch going completely across the front of the house.  It would have a very spacious yard (not that I would have noticed in the dark), and the front porch light would be on so we could see to find our way inside the house.
&n bsp;
Just as she promised, three wearisome miles later, we finally saw the house.  It was a very large, two-story home with the front porch light brightly shining.  And, yes, it had a wrap-around porch perched about five feet off the ground.  Heather and I were so relieved to get there, especially since it was now after midnight. 
 &l t;/div>
We quietly crept up the steps in order not to wake anyone.  The door to the house was made of solid wood, unlocked, and didn't make a sound when I turned the knob.  As Heather and I stepped inside, we were greeted by a loud, low growl.  I wished Nancy had warned us about the dog, which I couldn't see at the time!  I motioned to Heather not to be afraid and to follow me.  There was a note on the table, and I stepped forward to reach for it.  As I did, the growling became much more intense.  Now I was the one who was afraid and stood frozen.
& nbsp;
About that time, a very sleep boy about nine years old came down the stairs rubbing his tired eyes.  I immediately apologized for waking him up and explained who we were and why we were there.  I also told him we were a bit afraid of the dog.  He didn't seem impressed, said the dog wouldn't hurt us, and then he headed back upstairs.
&am p;nbsp;
I could hear him trying to wake Nancy.  It's so funny to listen to children yell in their "whisper voice."  Then he called her again.  And again.  I'm thinking the woman must be dead or something because this poor child can't get her to wake up at all!  Now, with the kitchen light on, Heather and I are still backed up against the front door, frightened by the huge black dog perched about 15 feet in front of us.  She looked at me and said, "Mom, I can't believe you took me all the way to Vermont, and we're in a house with mean dog and probably a dead woman!"  I told her not to be silly, even though I was thinking the same thing.
&n bsp;
Suddenly , that sweet child came bouncing back down the stairs.  He said he wasn't able to wake her.  I asked if he thought she was okay.  "Yes," he said.  "It's just that she has to be up in a couple of hours.  She always gets up at 2:00 in the morning to feed the chickens."  This seemed reasonable to me since they lived so far in the country, so I simply asked him where we should sleep.  He looked at me kind of funny and said, "I don't know."  Then it hit me.
I asked the boy, "What's your mom's name?"  He told me and then said, "But this isn't my house.  I'm just here visiting my grandmother."  Heather and I looked crossways at each other in confusion.  I said, "Okay.  Is your grandmother's name, Nancy?"  He looked at me like I was nuts, and said, "No, Nancy is my aunt."  Now, I was completed confused.  Then he continued, "She lives down the street."
O h my gosh!!  We were in the wrong house!!  I told this curious little youngster how sorry I was and thanked him for his help.  When we stepped outside, I looked at my daughter and warned, "Don't you dare laugh until we are in the car with the doors closed!"  ; And laugh we did.  I couldn't see anything again, but not because of the dark.  The tears were flowing down my face from laughter. 
 &l t;/div>
I pulled out of the yard, turned to the left and, sure enough!  A quarter of a mile up the road, on the same side was an identical log home.  And yes, the light was on for us there as well.  We entered into a warm kitchen, and rather than being met by a fierce-looking dog, we were met by Nancy and a glowing wood fire.  Nancy was grasping a cup of tea and asked us if we'd had a good trip.  Hysterical, we tried to tell her what had happened, and she explained that it was her mother-in-law's home we had visited.  We all got to laughing so hard that she had to get us into the guest room before we woke her husband and children. 
 &l t;/div>
Heather and I have laughed about that night many times through the years.  I can still hear the giggles bubbling up inside of her, knowing if she had begun laughing before we reached the car, Nancy's mother-in-law would have been awakened.  Heather still& ;nbsp;laughs from her toes - one of her most endearing qualities. 


Already Registered? Login Here
No comments made yet. Be the first to submit a comment