Don’t steal apples and watch out for the train

It happened while we were out camping at a popular fishing spot. I was twelve years old, and my family decided to go camping for the weekend. My dad decided that he was fed up with the neighbors crap, and that we should get away, so we headed for Codroy Pond, a beautiful spot on the west coast of the island. We also brought along my friend Ricky.

When we got to our destination, we were surprised to find that half the community had the same idea we had, and we ended up camping next to our neighbors that dad had left home to avoid.  We set up camp and in no time, Ricky and I began to explore the surrounding areas of the camp site.

While we were walking, we came across a railway track. Back then, the Canadian National Railway was still active, so it was nothing out of the ordinary to see a train buzz by at any given time.  We followed the tracks until we came to a little farmhouse surrounded by the ripest apple trees we ever seen.

Being twelve years old, I got hungry fast, and with the sight of delicious red ripe apples hanging from branches as far as the eye could see, it was inevitable that eventually, we would be in the trees, eating away. Well at least that was our plan.

The biggest apples were in the highest limbs (isn’t that always the case?) so me and Ricky climbed as high into the apple tree as we could, but not before the ass of my pants got tangled in a pointed limb. I paid no attention to the tangle as I managed to grab the biggest apple in the tree and toss it to Ricky, who was still trying to get up the tree (he wasn’t the best tree climber for sure, but I was!).

When I got my hands on yet another apple, this one slightly smaller than the last, we heard someone yelling and cussing loudly, from a distance.  I attempted to get down from the tree, forgetting about the limb that was tangled around the ass of my pants, and finding that I couldn’t move. As much as I twisted, I could not get free, so I stuffed whatever apples I could find into the pockets of my jeans, grabbed the limb, and began pulling in an effort to break free. Just then, the old farmer pulled out what looked like a shotgun, and began firing towards us.

I was terrified, and Ricky, like the trusted friend he was, took off and left me for dead. By the time the old farmer had got close to the tree, he aimed the gun up the tree, towards my ass, and shot at me. I thought this was it. The end of my apple stealing days. The end of my everything. Then I felt it. At first, it was painful, and then it went numb. And then the branch broke and I landed right on the nutcase with the shotgun. As sore as my ass was, I ran like hell for the railway tracks. He continued shooting at me, mainly at my aching ass, with what I later discovered was a gun filled with coarse salt.

I passed Ricky, my trusty ex friend who left me to deal with the nut case with the salt gun, and continued running until I reached the campsite where my parents were getting supper ready. When I arrived, mom and dad were so worried, and not until I managed to remove my hole ridden pants did I discover that the salt did not penetrate the seat of my pants, but they left large welts on my sore cheeks.

Ricky arrived later, and stuttered that I I I p p p p p asssed him l l l l like a f f f f reight train out of control.

I learned a valuable lesson that day. I learned that if you ever feel like stealing apples from a strangers tree, you should wear thick pants. I also learned that stealing is wrong, and if I want apples, I should ask mom and dad to buy them for me. Ricky learned that I could run faster than him when some nut case is shooting salt towards my ass. This was a day for lessons.

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