Running Away

Many years ago my cousin Leann, who is about four months younger than I am, and I were spending the day at my grandparents’ house. We were at that awkward “tween” age; no longer children, not quite adults, and beginning to be plagued by hormones.

We’d spent the afternoon on the screened porch but had been quarreling most of the day. Finally I lost my temper and flounced off the porch. Fueled by righteous anger I stormed through the house, out the back door, down the driveway, and past the screened porch – with my nose in the air. If I’d peeked to the left I would have seen that Leann wasn’t on the porch to witness my grand exit, but I was too busy being angry to notice.

I marched up the sidewalk toward the church at the end of the block, but instead of running up and down the steps and returning home like we kids usually did, I broke a major rule and crossed the street. Full of resentment I stomped up two more blocks to the corner of the main thoroughfare where the village bank stood. I flopped down on the small bench in front of the bank and waited for someone to find me.

As I sat I imagined the scene back at grandma’s: soon I would be missed and everyone would panic when they couldn’t find me. They’d comb the neighborhood calling my name, and when they finally found me I would tell them all of Leann’s crimes against me. Of course they would see my side of things and she’d be in trouble – BIG trouble.


I kicked my feet and waited.


I counted cars driving past, and waited.


I watched a bee pollinate the dandelion at my feet, and waited.


There’s nothing more boring than sitting on a bench in front of a bank in a small village on a Sunday afternoon.


After sitting there for hours my temper cooled, I got hungry, and decided to go back. Walking back to grandma’s I started to worry; what if everyone was mad at me? What if I got into trouble? As I approached the house I looked around nervously, but didn’t see anyone outside. Slipping into the back door I tried to think of an excuse to explain where I’d been. My mouth was dry, my heart was pounding; my mind was totally blank.

Then I saw the clock – I’d only been gone for fifteen minutes. No-one had even missed me!


At that point I decided that running away from home was over-rated.


I didn’t tell anyone about my little adventure for several years, and when I finally did ‘fess up my mom admitted that they didn’t even know I was gone. Good think I hadn’t been kidnapped; if I had Leann would have REALLY been in trouble!


Did you ever run away from home when you were a kid? What happened? Inquiring minds want to know!

Amy Sue

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