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Storytime: Babysitter or bodyguard

Posted on Tuesday, January 3, 2023 at 12:16 pm

By Lorry Myers

We are a family on the move never more than this Saturday morning when four of us were in four different vehicles headed in four different directions. My daughters, husband and I all had day away places to be, the first which was the gas station to fuel up before we went our separate ways. Before we left, my husband gave his usual speech about all the bad things that can happen to those who don’t pay attention.

I have heard this lecture before.Randy firmly believed that I fly through life without a clue to the world around me. He was certain that I park in poorly lit spots then walk to my car without thinking twice about the darkness around me. He was convinced that I go places I shouldn’t without regard to where I am.

Randy thought I needed a babysitter.

Or a bodyguard.

He also lectured his children the same way he did his wife, convinced we are all crime victims waiting for a crime. He constantly reminded our kids that they needed to have a way out and a way home no matter where they go. Randy worried that his smalltown children are clueless about big city ways.

Forgetting that these children are not children anymore.

So, before we each got in our cars on that busy Saturday morning, Randy lectured us on road safety and paying attention in parking lots.

“There are crazy people in the world,” he said, like we hadn’t heard that before.

After that, we drove single file out of the drive way straight to the gas station, all four squeezing into the few empty spaces at the pumps. Evidently, we weren’t the only people that had places to be because the pumps were busy with every spot full and more vehicles waiting to take their turn.

The daughter at the pump behind me finished first and got in her car and waited for me to pull out. The other daughter was pumping gas in the far lane across from us and her father was fueling up in front of her. When Randy was done, he walked across the lanes to give me a kiss and remind me to be careful and to call him when I was on my way home. From my car I watched as he casually sauntered toward his car then suddenly stopped at the white vehicle beside me and opened the door.

What was he doing?

That was not his car and by the look on face of the person sitting in the passenger seat, my husband was a stranger. Stranger danger!

For the full column, see this week’s edition of the Centralia Fireside Guard.