Day 1 Writing Challenge Share a Story - Up On The Roof!

Image by mintyfreshmangos on Deviant Art

I signed up for a 30 day writing challenge through my distributor, Ingram Sparks. With company coming tomorrow, I can't guarantee my writing be done daily, but I am hope to get through them all. If you want to join me, put a link to your blog in the comments and I'll check it out. The prompt for day 1 is -

You have a story—and you want to share it with the world. 
Pick up the pen (or open the laptop) and begin writing....Write 
about a vivid childhood memory. Write about your family. Write 
about your hopes, your fears, your dreams. Just write.

= = = = 

My childhood was not a happy one. I just couldn't seem to fit into the role required of me in a tiny town in the US Midwest in the late 50's /early 60's. Because of this, I honestly don't seem to have a lot of memories from that time in my life. Those I do have are mostly like little film clips that flash by - just snippets of small moments here and there.  For some reason, though, there is one I remember clearly.  

I was in elementary school - my best guess would be about 3rd grade.  We lived in a old style duplex which was a set of older two story houses attached by their a middle wall with a roofed porch jutting out the opposite sides.  My bedroom was on the 2nd floor with the roof of that side porch right outside my window.  

Unlike many kids that age, I loved thunderstorms. There were many stormy nights I laid in bed staring out my window as lightning streaked across the sky. In those moments I loved my room. But there were times it scared me as well.  I felt that porch roof outside my window made it possible for someone to climb up and get in.  There was also a small door in my room that led into the attic - a dark scary place.  On sleepless nights I would stare at the door watching to see if it would open.

One lazy afternoon as I was hanging out in my bedroom, I realized there was a tear in the window screen.  That opened a world of possibilities for me.  Without a second thought, I enlarged the hole by pushing on it and climbed out onto that side porch roof. From there it was easy to walk up onto the main roof.  What an amazing adventure! What a secret, taboo thing to be doing! Not once did I think about whether it was safe.

Rooftop. Made with PicsArt by @pauli125art
After quietly creeping around on the roof checking out the view, I settled back down on the side porch roof outside my bedroom window to rest and became lost in my thoughts.  That was until I noticed an older girl walking by who knew my family.  She looked right at me.  Would she tell? Quietly I crept back through the screen and pretended it never happened.

As you can expect, she told her parents, who told my parents, who talked to me about safety and forbid me to do it again. The screen was replaced by the end of the day.  I guess I could have defied my parents, figured out how to take the screen out and put it back in, and kept exploring. But the magic of stepping through my bedroom window was that it was unexpected. Noticing a tear in it, embracing the impulse to climb through, walking the roof for the first time and seeing what the world looked like from up there.  After I'd done it once, a lot of the excitement was gone.  It was no longer new.

There you go.  One strong memory from my childhood that has stood the test of time. Wish there were more. I wonder what the day 2 challenge will be?