My First Friend

Overgrown House 4 (flickr.com)Overgrown House 4 by Hoekemannen (flickr.com)

My Real Memoir

I spotted a weasel in the spring of my 5th year. Apart from a few orange trees and an incinerator, our back yard was boring. The trees were too young to climb, and I’d already checked the incinerator for any treasures that might have survived the last trash-burning.

The sleek little weasel didn’t want to play. It saw me and took off like a high-speed monorail. So I chased it. Out of the yard and across the street into an overgrown lot. Through the weeds it raced, and down a tunnel of wooden arches choked with dead vines.

At the end of the tunnel, I found Crazy Old Alice. My first friend. Diminutive, shriveled, and dressed in a raggedy frock, she showed me her cottage. No, there was no furnace for cooking wayward children (although Alice was as skinny as a weasel). She didn’t want to eat me, she wanted to show me the massive soldier statue that dominated her tiny living room. She spoke very little and mumbled when she did, so it remained a mystery. There was almost no furniture other than the statue.

Then we went outside and Alice showed me her rabbits. “Easter Bunnies!” I thought. They lived in hutches and loved attention, so I began to visit regularly. I was Alice’s only friend.

I always brought carrots for the bunnies. But one day I caught Alice stealing their carrots! I told her it was wrong to steal, especially from Easter bunnies. But she continued to do it.

A few weeks later, I was climbing through the overgrown arches, when a tall, scary man suddenly lifted me up by my shirt collar. He shouted, using all sorts of bad words, and told me he’d kill me if he ever caught me there again!

That night, I dreamed I was climbing through the vine-choked arches–only now they were electrical wires! The scary man was at the end of the tunnel, laughing menacingly. Then I accidentally touched a wire, fell to the ground…and died! (More on that here.)

I finally told my parents about my visits to see Alice and the Easter bunnies, and about the man who’d used bad words and threatened to kill me. They were stunned, and went straight over to Crazy Old Alice’s cottage. What they discovered was horrendous:

Alice, the widow of a decorated war hero (the soldier statue), was only in her late 40s, but she’d had a stroke. She lived on a hero’s pension, but it was regularly cashed and pocketed by her son, the tall scary man. As her legal guardian, he provided her with a few meager canned goods and an occasional cheap smock. She was starving and alone.

But no more. The neighbors had Alice’s son arrested, cleaned up her house, and showered her with food and clothing.

I was no longer her only friend.

My Real Memoir is a series. To read the next one, click here.

About mitchteemley

Writer, Filmmaker, Humorist, Thinker-about-stuffer
This entry was posted in Humor, Memoir and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

33 Responses to My First Friend

  1. haoyando says:

    Nice story. I hope the pension is good enough for Alice to hire somebody to care for her.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. This was an awesome story. Very cool.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. What a tragic story! Little Mitch who loved bunnies saved her life ❤

    Liked by 4 people

  4. What a sorrow and a triumph. Great conflict in this story.

    Liked by 4 people

  5. Wow. Thank God for young Mitch and the weasel.

    Liked by 4 people

  6. Gina Cash says:

    Amazing story, Mitch! A triumphant tale of the good son versus the bad son. What a godsend you were to poor Alice. Your bravery in telling your parents may very well have saved her life.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. lilyofthevalley777 says:

    Oh my gosh Mitch. What a story. I was sad at first, but it all worked out in the end. The big picture in retrospect, I would consider it a God thing. God had placed you in her path and it had changed her journey. Children are innocent. In this case Romans 8:28 was in play. Good thing you told your parents. Although I will give some credit to the bunnies. 🐇🐇

    Liked by 2 people

    • mitchteemley says:

      I’m sure you’re right, Susan. Looking back, I see God’s hand at work long before I had anything like a real personal faith.

      Liked by 2 people

      • lilyofthevalley777 says:

        I know Mitch. Children are Gods delight, no matter what age, since He knows the beginning from the end, this had all played out in linear time. You just played your part in the big picture. I’m sure He gets a kick a out of you.

        Liked by 1 person

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  9. Tim Harlow says:

    This was a very moving story. Youdid a great job; I quite enjoyed your writing. Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. WOW, Mitch.That is some story but it is amazing to me how many people have had experiences with odd folk that they never told their parents or others, and then wonder or figure it out too late. I am glad that you said something, and t hat your parents stepped in.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. This made me think of our Bunnies we had when the kids were young Mitch. I learned during this time, early 70’s that Rabbit is also a food source in Europe. We had a family not far from us that always had Rabbits for sale. I was to learn that this Portuguese family also ate rabbit as a food source quite frequently. Should you or anyone else out there in Reader land be interested, check out the stats. https://www.compassioninfoodbusiness.com/media/6898105/info-1-rabbit-meat-production-in-the-eu.pdf

    Liked by 1 person

  12. What an AMAZING story!! Thank GOODNESS you had the courage to tell your parents!! Oh, I love that the rest of her days were much, much better!! God is good!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. K.L. Hale says:

    Through the eyes of a child. Perspectives versus reality~but the heart is the heart and I’m so glad this “adult” situation had a happy ending.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Ann Coleman says:

    You were in the right place, at the right time! I had to think that was meant, and thank goodness you found Alice.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Beauty of the human spirit!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Jennie says:

    What a wonderful story! If you hadn’t been there…

    Liked by 1 person

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  19. marcella16092 says:

    Thats really cool. wow.

    Liked by 1 person

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  22. So grateful you found each other and that you told your parents when you did.

    Liked by 1 person

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