13 February 2011

Running Away From Home

My sister has blogged recently about Harpo running away from home.  This reminded me of the time I ran away from home back when we lived in a tiny 2-bedroom weatherboard home in a small country town in Queensland.

I was about seven years old.  On the day in question, I was greatly disenfranchised by a recent parental oppression and I was angrier than usual - a tiny black thundercloud, tightly coiled and ready to unleash an as yet unthought-of explosion of fury over all who had so grievously wronged me.

I finally straightened my rage-twisted thoughts out long enough to form a cunning plan.  I would run away from home.  That would make them all sorry.

I marched straight out of the driveway and stood on the footpath.  I considered storming off up the street towards the town.  I considered stomping off the other way, towards the school.  Neither option seemed particularly safe, but my wrath boiled on and demanded an outlet.

Momentarily abandoning my plan to run away from home, I devised a master plan so cunning that you may be surprised to know that such a brilliant plan came from one so young.

I decided to sell the house.

Sure, they could send me to my room, but I could sell the house out from under them.

Storming back into the house I found a piece of cardboard, some sticky tape and a black marker.  With the marker I scrawled the words, "FOR SALE" on the card and stomped into the back yard where I found a small eight-inch wooden stake.  I used the sticky tape to stick the card onto the dirt-encrusted stake, and strode out the front again to find a good place to position the sign.

I quickly found that the ground was too hard to drive the stake in, and moved my project to the gravel driveway.  The gravel was too shallow and loose, and after balancing it vertically in a small pile of gravel for a minute, I watched as the sign itself gave up on the sale and fell down flat in the driveway.

I stood back for a minute and waited for a buyer who would come and purchase the house.  I imagined how gratifyingly remorseful my parents would be regarding their callous behaviour towards me, tearfully apologising as they carried their belongings outside in large cardboard boxes as I stood by unforgiving.  "Well Mum you should have thought of that before you told me to go to my room."

After two or three minutes it became apparent that it wasn't a seller's market, and I trudged disconsolately back to the house.  The house remained unsold and I had failed at my one and only attempt at running away from home.

To this day, I have never again tried to run away from home, or sell a house without a Real Estate Agent's license.  Which is probably for the best.


Heather said...

Heh. Love your thinking, and your description of a Child Wronged is so perfect and eloquent, too.

When I was that little black thundercloud of a Child Wronged and decided I would run away from home, I loudly announced this as my plan to my mother (how could one be Wronged without an audience, after all?) and instead of the falling to the ground begging my forgiveness and promising me ponies with much hand-wringing and tearfulness, my mother very calmly said "well, I'll help you pack - hang on while I grab a suitcase for you." Being in my room while she pondered aloud which things would fit into my bag that I'd need to take, I totally crumpled and changed my mind. (It was news that I couldn't bring my cat that made me cave at the end.)

Andi said...

So funny!! And so well written! Great story!

flask said...

awesome story.

i needed a laugh today.

and you gave me one.


Tracy P. said...

There's still a seven-year-old living inside me, I'm pretty sure. I'd like to think she will grow up one day, but I'm kind of afraid she would have if she were going to.

Fabulous story!

veiledturnip said...

So cute! What a great story. The day I ran away from home - no-one even noticed I was missing (I was probably only gone for a few hours - but still!).

tinsenpup said...

You weren't the average 7 year old, were you? You sound like a Machiavellian genius! "If I'm going to run away and eschew the comforts of home, you shall join me methinks, Father and Mother. Muahahahaha!"

Joy said...

Great story. I can just imagine the little for sale sign.
♥ Joy