Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Growing up


Fall is my favorite season. Summer this year has been less heinous than most, but still, I can't wait for fall. Labor day is always a happy day.

This Labor Day was particularly happy. I had an Illumination session with a Shamanic healer-in-training and then came home needing access to an open flame for my homework assignment. Lacking a gas stove or fireplace, I did what any reasonable person would do and dug a fire pit in my backyard.

Being as it was Labor Day, and being as I had a newly-dug fire pit, I decided that I had no option but to host a bonfire for the two of us and christen the pit. I went to the store and bought stuff for foil dinners and s'mores, and a pineapple to grill. We built a fire, cooked our food, and it was lovely.

I love campfires. Always have. My freshman year of college, building fires became something of a ritual, and a saving ritual at that. When the homesickness got too much, as it so often did, a group of girlfriends and I would often drive up into a canyon and build a fire. We'd stay up late, talking and laughing about how great all of our homes were. It was a rough year, but those nights out in the cold night around a fire kept me feeling alive, if only barely.

I remember one night in particular. It was late; we were tired. We had talked and laughed ourselves exhausted. Our spirits flagged, unfortunately, before our fire did and we had come unprepared with not a bottle of water among us. It's not responsible to leave a fire pit full of smoldering embers, this much we knew, but, for a moment, we were flummoxed as to how we could leave without potentially burning down all of Utah County.

Never one to shirk an opportunity for heroism, I stepped up to the plate or, in this case, the fire pit. I dropped my pants. And I peed that fire right out. It seemed the only solution.

Little did I know the impact this would have on my comrades. The hysteria that ensued was beyond anything I could have anticipated, to my great delight. The girls whipped themselves into a complete frenzy of gut-splitting laughter and, the greatest moment of all, one girl wet her pants. She just kept squawking about how the firelight was glinting off of the downy fuzz on my behind, and laughing even harder. Gales of laughter. Sobs of laughter. We went home completely rejuvenated, in a way only possible after a fit of hysterics intense enough to nearly hospitalize you.

Last night, as we watched the coals glowing, I thought back on the good old days. I stood up. I gathered my skirt. I looked at Ryan. And I let loose all over that fire.

Ryan didn't laugh until he wet his pants. He just looked on, mystified, and then stood up and gave me a high five.

I guess we are growing up.

9 comments:

J and Rachel Kirkham said...

I will absolutely never ever forget that night. Or any of those nights for that matter. Those were the days and it seems amazing that it has been so many years since those days. You were the best bonfire friend and I loved every minute of it, especially since we both felt the same homesickness. Cheers to you and your steady stream!! xoxo

Katie Bit said...

You know, sadly enough, if I remember correctly (And I'm fairly sure I would not forget such a thing!), I think I wasn't there the night you peed on the fire. Having lived many miles away (the other side of the hall), I was late to be incorporated into the bonfire group. But I do remember hearing about that legendary night. I was there for some great rounds of "chubby bunny" though (and have some great pics of it!).

amy said...

Katie Bit, I simply can't believe you weren't there, primarily because it's hard to imagine I laughed so hard in your absence. You've always been the best at getting a good guffaw out of me.

I knew my memory was a little hazy, but I guess if it's going to fail me I'd rather have memories enhanced by your imagined presence than the other way around. Maybe I should start adding you to other fond memories to improve them. Remember when we were kids playing hide and go seek in the neighborhood? Those were the days!

That Chubby Bunny. I'll never know why that game is so funny, but, man oh man, is it ever. At least it was in my teens :)

Jen said...

Yet another reason for us to be neighbors. You can gain mad quilting skillz from me, and I will channel my inner free spirit through you.

Elyse said...

You should definitely start a facebook group for fire extinguishers like yourself! lol.. You crack me up!!!

Kate said...

Getting old is just plain old lame sometimes.

At least you got a husband out of the deal...even if he doesn't squeal like a girl.

Josh and Gloriana said...

oh goodness- I still tell that story. I had never in my life seen a girl pee standing up straight on like that- it was miraculous. Although I will neither confirm nor deny that it was me who peed her pants, I will confirm that night will live on in my mind as the night I laughed harder than I had ever before.

e said...

When I grow up I will have a fire pit in my back yard. I will invite you over . . . for several reasons.

Being Ausmus said...

Okay Amy...I am in love with your blog and you don't even know me! How and when did I become a stalker you ask well I'll tell you...
So in case you didn't catch the name I'm Jordan's wife Robyn...we have met, but just briefly. Cousin and current roommate to Jacki and Rob!
So my husband is out of town and my son is asleep and none of my friends have updated their blogs...and I'm all caught up on mine!
So for the first time out of sheer boredom I start searching through my contacts to see if I know any of their contacts...I know I sound pathetic. Well I saw "Amy" under Jacki's list and thought..."hey I wonder if thats Ryan's wife." I read the title of your blog and that was it...I was hooked! You are hilarious! Although we still don't know each other and it probably creeps you out...I will be back...you should really be a writer:)!