Monday, September 22, 2008


The girls and I spent last weekend at Cedarmore, which is a youth retreat in Baghdad, Kentucky. We’ve been attending the property, for one reason or another, for over 30 years (yep, that means it started when I was a kid). It’s a great place. This past weekend myself, Kara (you remember my friend and fellow teacher Kara) and Bill Clark (our good friend, pastor and youth minister) took a group of youth middle school and high school kids. Because Bryan had football games all weekend (he is a High School Football Ref) and because she is within months of being in the youth group herself – gasp -, Nikki went along with us.

Most of you know that Nikki had a rather rough start to this new school year, so I’m admittedly a little ‘over-reacty’ (a new word I’ve just invented). Being over-reacty is a syndrom that is verified by ones reactions to the words LOW and HIGH. Here is my example: Part of the retreat is getting to listen to some great, live, Christian rock bands. This retreat featured the Dave Campbell Band. Kara and I were sitting together on the second morning, listening to the wonderful female co-lead-singer sing when Kara announced “Last night she was HIGH, today she is LOW” at which point I completely panicked, grabbed Nikki’s meter and said “where is she?!!!!” Kara burst out lauging (I seem to have this affect on her) and I suddenly realized she was talking about the singer being HIGH during the concert the night before and LOW that morning. I will leave you to absorb that.

Moving on to our next retreat adventure; we were actually in a cabin, a real cabin. In the woods, with, you know animals, snakes, bugs, no air conditioning but we did have a shower and a bathroom (Thank You!!!) We split up into different groups for Bible study times. I was a study leader for some of the 6th graders, which means that Amber was in a different group with some of her friends. Because of this, we tended to get done at different times, so we all hooked up at our cabin afterward before moving on to the next activity (allow me to digress: have I mentioned that Cedarmore is all hills? I mean, you would think that if you go UP hill, you will eventually go DOWN hill right? Not at Cedaremore; I don’t know how they pulled it off but everything is up a steep hill). Okay, back to my story…..

Saturday afternooon I arrived back to the cabin after Amber. When I walked in, she was standing there crying. She had been stung, twice, by bees (and Amber has a severe bug phobia so that just made it worse). I was tending to the sting when the door flew open, and a few, screaming girls burst in screaming SNAKE SNAKE!!! I said “shut the door, don’t let it in”. So they did. A few seconds later the door burst open again , this time it was Nikki (by the way, Kara was with me at this point also). Nikki looked like she was doing one of those silent laughing things where you inhale and can’t exhale. Only, after I really looked at her, I realized she wasn’t actually breathing. I stood up and she finally got out “A SNAKE ATTACKED ME” and collapsed into my arms in a complete and total (and much warranted) meltdown. It took us a good long while to get her calm enough to tell us what happened. Her and some of the other girls were “hanging out” between our cabin and the boys’ cabin. The boys are known for their pranks so when Nikki saw what she thought was a rubber snake, she decided she would show them they couldn’t scare her with something that looked so FAKE and she stepped on it. Only guess what, it didn’t like being stepped on (and probably didn’t appreciate being called fake) and wrapped itself around her leg. She kicked it off, but by then the snake was mad and it came back and somehow wrapped itself around her again. This time she screamed and kicked hard. Her second scream got the attention of some of the high school boys, who quickly came to her rescue. According to Nikki “they held off the snake so I could get away”.

Later that evening Nikki informed me that being attacked by a snake was ALMOST as bad as having diabetes. Amber and Nikki didn’t leave our cabin for the rest of the day; I did finally get them out to go down for dinner. I guess sometimes God has a way of putting things in perspective for you, things can always get worse.


Jill said...

OOOOOO-MMMMMM-GGGGGGG! I bet you were freaking! Poor Nikki!! :( Glad it wasnt worse!! How have y'all been? Haven't heard from ya lately :)

Things are getting better here! It took Kacey learning how to dose herself for the nurse to finally learn how ~grumbles~ least she's doing it now!

Talk soon!