Hayrides and Mudslides


As a child, my family and I would take trips out to a farm to a pick pumpkins and ride a spooky hayride. One year I learned a valuable lesson about keeping my hands in the vehicle at all times.

The hayride was aimed towards children. Having seen most of the props in previous years, I focused my attention on the cattails that poked through the path of the hayride, grabbing and executing them as they flooded the tractor’s bed. Then I saw it: the top was fluffy.  It looked sturdy.  It was the alpha-male of cattails.

When the cattail was in reach I gave it a hardy pull, but it showed no sign of budging. I held on tight, expecting tractor’s motion to be on my side.  But like many before me, my pride led to my demise, and I was hurtled from the wagon face-first into a pile of mud. The driver never heard my screams.

Smothered in mud, I ran like the victim of an 80’s horror flick trying to keep up with the tractor.  With my eyes focused on the prize, I strode heavily until the dark lords of cohesion sucked one of my light-up power ranger shoes into the muddy abyss.

Now running semi-barefooted, a crowd of mothers was at the end of the wagon screaming, “Give me your hand!” I reached the bed and they hoisted me up to safety.

Now people–when they say keep your hands in the vehicle at all times, please listen. There may be invisible forces at work, and you might just end up just with your own Halloween horror story, just like me.

(photo courtesy of Jerryb8/ Dreamstime.com)