posted on Sep, 22 2021 @ 08:34 PM
Now that Fall has officially started, rainy and chilly here today, I have already began my conversion into making a pot of homemade vegetable beef
soup each week. Currently the middle 50’s, it should drop to he middle or upper 40’s overnight. Only the earliest of leaves have started changing
and scant few have fallen. So not quite like that night in 1987, though that was more mid October if memory serves. But maybe it is the temperature
change or just thinking of this contest that has jarred a mostly forgotten memory loose. Then again perhaps it is something more.
In what seems to me to have been mid October of 1987, a few of us had gathered at Matt’s for an evening out in the woods. Now Matt lived just a
couple miles to the east of Camden, Ohio. Matt, Greg, Lance, Brian, Rodney, myself, Kim, Becca, Traci, Angie and Mary had came to be shown the
cabin/shack Matt and Greg (who had taken the nickname Bull) had built. Log walls, stone fireplace and log benches for seating. Not bad but not a
permanent shelter by any means. It was probably close to 8pm as we all arrived. Dark because the sun had long set but you could still see in the
moonlight. Teenagers in the woods and not a drop of alcohol, hard to believe but true. We all talked, joked told stories and experienced a complexity
of human interactions. While not drinking, there was six guys and five girls but of all the mixture only Lance and Traci were dating. Where do the
problems begin? When everyone has ideas different from one another as to what sort of pairings should happen.
Seeing that writing on the wall, I opted for none of the above and went for a walk in the woods. Lance and Traci were not far behind me just to enjoy
themselves in solitude. The air was crisp and a touch foggy which prevents a frost. A noise through the leaves at a quickened pace in the ravine to
the left and ahead of me told me that I had kicked up a deer. From behind me I heard a muffled male voice yell out.
Spinning on my heels, I quickly closed the gap between myself and Lance and Traci...startling them in the process as they didn’t know I was nearby.
Together we ran back to the cabin. Matt, Rodney and the rest of the girls were there except for Kim. Bull and Brian were not but came back some five
minutes later. Both were cussing me out for how fast I had ran through the ravine. They had went looking for Kim after she went looking for me and
hadn’t returned. According to Bull, I had scared her and ran off as they gave chase. So I asked where was she now? No one knew.
Matt and Becca stayed at the cabin. Lance, Bull, Brian and Rodney went in one group. Angie, Mary, Traci and myself in the other group. They were to
check the woods and I and the girls to check by the house. Angie and Mary told me what I had already figured out...Kim and Becca had been picking back
and forth at each other. They also told me they heard me outside the cabin trying to scare them which didn’t happen. Not that I wouldn’t have,
just the thought never entered my mind.
Back at the house was Kim, waiting for one of us to come out to announce she was leaving. And to yell at me for scaring her and running off into the
ravine. Again, wasn’t me, which her cousin Traci finally convinced her because I was ahead of them and even farther from where Kim was. The other
search party walked up out of the woods, intent on going home as it was going on 11pm.
Back I walked to tell Matt that everyone was accounted for and was leaving. Matt and Becca came running up as I was nearing the halfway point. Becca
terrified, grabbed me. They had heard something outside the cabin and stepped out to check. That was when what sounded like fireworks came from the
fireplace, rapid and loud. To which I gave Matt a glance but he said that he had no fireworks and it wasn’t pine resin popping either as no pine was
A poorly told tale of teenagers in the woods at night. A little tired. A little cold. Easy to brush off as just one of those tales. I did, for many
years, and I was there. But time is immutable. Sometimes we are the pebbles in the river that barely diverted the flow, other times we are the rocks
that cause the rapids. Perhaps we need to start at the beginning.