Ever been dared to do something?
What about something you did not want to do?
The thing about dares is that they can be as simple as running out the front door, in bare feet, while the ground is littered with snow, to eating potato chips with excessive amounts of hot sauce on them, to engaging in harmful acts that could cause problems for yourself or others. Read to see what happens when these children take a dare to go through the woods on a rainy day at camp.
Angry raindrops pounded leaves from tops to bottoms of soaring oak trees as wet foliage crunched and flattened beneath our trotting sneakers. We didn’t mean to get caught in a storm or to miss the last bus home and yet, despite threatening black clouds and pre-shower drizzle; Jerry double dog dared us to venture to the far end of the woods.
Leisurely strolls from the site to the border where the forest met the road might have taken fifteen to twenty minutes under normal circumstances wherein journeyers walked directly from points A to B. This, of course, was something we never did. Our manner was to goof off—to enjoy the scenery as well as the playground any decent spread of forestry offered its guests. After all, what good came from wandering through wilds if trekkers failed to donate time for climbing trees, collecting leaves, and entrancing squirrels?
One thing for sure though was that running back through the trees could easily take a good eight to ten minutes for us fastest runners and even longer for the slowpokes. We sure found out after one of the kids, lingering behind the rest, came jetting down to warn us the buses had arrived to take us home early. We were only day campers, you know. We had no tents!
Big hands pulled small palms as we jockeyed our way beneath the wooded umbrella. Nevertheless, by time we smashed our way through falling leaves, tree roots, and splashing mud, we saw the rear of the last bus as its wheels rolled down the long winding hill—carrying the last of the sensible kids whose levelheadedness never would have provoked them to stray into the rainy woods!
“Oh, don’t worry about it. It’s no big deal,” Jerry stated as the rest of us cried out in dismay. “We’ll just climb the fence!”
Climb the fence... yeah... I just loved climbing twelve foot fences—throwing my legs and arms over barbed wires in hopes of not getting cut. It’s not that I didn’t have any courage, but can somebody just tell me why the buses left us! Didn’t those camp coaches conduct a headcount? Didn’t they realize eight kids were missing—had not taken seats! Hello? I had no plans to walk five miles through a rainstorm to get back home!
My unclenched fist longed to punch that Jerry right in his fat nose from skipping the dare and the double dare in the first place. I hated it when he jumped to double dog dares without giving anybody a chance to decide if a simple dare you or double dare you was enough. Most times, when at least one person took the basic dare, the rest of us could get away without participating in his little shenanigans. That’s why he liked jumping the gun. It’s like he gets a kick out of making us live up to our honor.
Now everybody has to climb that slippery wet metal fence. After that, we’ll have to walk to the railroad station where Jerry will start playing follow–the-leader so everybody’ll have to follow him across five sets of tracks—even though he knows that trigger-happy old-timer, who lives in the shack, hates it when we run through his yard to get to the steel rails embedded in the ground. Don’t know what’s scarier though—crossing rows and rows of railroad tracks with a shotgun at my back or crawling through the manhole Jerry will lead us into afterwards. No doubt it’ll be full of flowing rainwater by time we get to it...
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