In the way back of the lot near the stream and down from the climbing tree were two hammocks. Every year on Memorial Day weekend Mrs. Green brought out the hammocks and tied them securely to the two trees. The trees seemed to have grown at just the right distance for hammocks and were perfectly placed, creating just enough shade and a wonderful view of the stream and the wishing field beyond.
It seemed like everyone who visited the Greens over the years loved the hammocks. Carson came over just to get his reading homework done while swinging back and forth. Mike, Steve, Evelyn and Sue found they could all fit side by side on the hammocks and sway to the melodies they created. Sylvia and Sam had each taken naps by the babbling brook. Juliette had yet to swing on the hammocks but she had heard about them and couldn’t wait to take a turn. Even Ampersand found a way to climb into the hammock, gently walk between the ropes, turn around and take a good afternoon snooze.
It was Mr. Green who found he did not enjoy the shady spot and the enchantment of hammocks. Mrs. Green had bought the two hammocks years ago with visions of the couple relaxing after hours of hard work in the yard. She was sure they would look up at the stars at night and count the rolling clouds going by.
Mr. Green tried to sit in the hammock. He really tried hard. Somehow each time Mr. Green attempted the hammock some comical calamity ensued. It was comical to Mrs. Green at least.
This year Mrs. Green was determined to help Mr. Green enjoy the hammock.
“Sit down slowly and use your hands for support and balance.”
Mr. Green sat slowly and flipped backwards into a somersault. His feet landed in the stream. His hat flew off his head and he ran sloshing in the shallow water and the slippery rocks to chase his favorite baseball cap floating downstream.
He tried straddling the hammock with one foot firmly planted on the ground, he to push too hard on one side and the hammock turned upside down leaving Mr. Green on his hands and knees. Mrs. Green tried not to laugh.
Mrs. Green helped Mr. Green up, brushed him off and tried again. “Let’s try sitting on it together. We will count to three and sit.”
Somehow, someway it always turned out the same for Mr. Green. Ampersand ran up and jumped on top of Mr. Green and he ended up eating grass. Mrs. Green tried not to laugh.
Mrs. Green held the hammock steady and Mr. Green climbed in and for a moment it was fine and then Mrs. Green stepped away to get into her hammock and womp, Mr. Green was eating dirt. Mrs. Green tried not to laugh.
Mr. Green was a good sport about it. On Saturday afternoon everyone was over for a barbecue. Mr. Green flipped hamburgers, served everyone lemonade and ice cream Sundays in plastic cups as they laughed, played and enjoyed the gentle swing of the hammock. They all offered to take over the grill and encouraged Mr. Green to go relax. Mr. Green just kept flipping burgers and serving food, and Mrs. Green tried not to laugh.
Copyright Terri Neagle Donaldson 2015
Terri Neagle Donaldson and Stressfreestories, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Terri Neagle Donaldson and Stressfreestories with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.