...because we all have our motley moments!

Monday, July 13, 2009

A Dark Night from my Past

It was a steamy hot summer night in mid-July. I was young, but that does not excuse my poor judgement. One rash decision led to a moment I will never forget, visions that I cannot erase no matter how many years pass. I had just turned 20, and I thought I knew it all. I was working that summer for my college as a R.A. for the Upward Bound Program. My husband, then boyfriend, was an R.A. too, and we basically spent the summer chaperoning some really cool high school kids. The day started out harmlessly enough, volleyball and a water balloon fight. That evening we all ate dinner in the cafeteria. They served lasagna, which was actually quite tasty. It should have been a tip-off. Our good luck could not continue. Shortly there after we all loaded up into college vans for a trip to the Gibson County Fair.

This fair was one of the best in the area. The 4-H animal exhibits were awesome, and the fair had the perfect balance of fried food and carnival rides. Our kids were a close knit group who loved to hang out together, so a big group of us went looking for rides we could all fit on at once. At this point in my life, I was still doing crazy things like riding roller coasters and rocko-planes. No ride was too scary for me until now. There before me stood the Kamikaze. Two arms spinning side by side upside down and all around.

In a moment I relive over and over again, I climbed aboard. Charlie and I were on one side, and about ten of our kids climbed into the other. As soon as the ride started, I knew I was in trouble. I had never been so terrified in my life. I can still remember begging, "Please God let this ride end. Please God let this ride end." I was slient in my fear, but I could hear screaming all around me. Over and over we flew defying gravity and all natural laws. Over and over I prayed to live until the end. Ominously, the ride slowed. I thought maybe the operator had compassion for one of the screamers, and I began to thank God for answering my prayers.

I looked over at Les in the other car. He was one of my favorites. Normally laughing and joking, he was now in tears. As they climbed out of the car, graphic details of the horrific tragedy began to unfold. There was an accident. Almost everyone was affected. Chunks of tomatoes and peppers were everywhere. Chuck bravely helped us piece the accident together: "I looked up and saw a great big pink cloud of puke!" Since we were in the other car, we were spared. All of the girls had globs of lasagna remains in their hair. We rushed to the bathrooms, and I tried to help them clean up. We had to wash all their hair in the sink before we could even leave. The smell from the van ride home still lingers. We cheated Death, but he scar(r)ed us for life.


Bryssy said...

That's hilarious, Pam!! I have never been a fair-ride-rider. Lucky me. :-)

Tara said...

I generally love roller coasters.....but, I've been on a few that were so scary. Me and my friend were on one and seriously BLACKED OUT from the physics of it. I don't know how that can be safe. lol

The puke....that is probably scarier than the coaster! lol SO GROSS!!!!!

Liz said...


Rachel said...

LOL--you are such a great story-teller, Pam!

Maria said...

You totally had me going!
I can just imagine the smell-UGH! That reminds me of a puke story that maybe I'll tell on Wednesday.

Pam said...

Thanks girls. I am glad you liked it. I can remember it like it was yesterday. Have a great night!

PS - Hey Tara, I just realized that your painting is behind you, right? It is awesome!

Lindsay said...


I love rollercoasters and rides and I have yet to been on one that I didn't like. However a few years ago my mom road on the Cracken at Seaworld with us and puked as soon as she walked off the ride. She had to go home soon after because she couldn't shake that puky feeling.

Donna said...

Ahhhhh! I can always count on Motley Moms for great tales of bodily fluids...that was disgustingly hilarious, Pam!

I just went to Islands of Adventure with my mom and sisters in June and we rode all the coasters...it was really fun!!! I hadn't ridden a good roller coaster in years...Paul can't ride them bc he stops breathing. Unfortunate side effect for some.