When I was in elementary school, I won a free paperback book. Since I was an avid reader, this was a big deal for me. It was called The Ghost of Dibble Hollow. It told the tale of a modern-day kid enlisted by the ghost of a boy from the 1700s to assist him in his task of finding lost money. The art work for the front cover had been done in blues, whites, browns and grays with the ghostly image of a colonial-era boy hiding behind a tree. It was creepy, and I had to read it!
I had started reading the book at school, and I wanted to keep reading when I got home. Unfortunately, Dad had other plans. He decided that the inside of the cabin of our pickup truck needed cleaning, so after dinner, this task was assigned to me.
I took the book out to the driveway with me, but I managed to hold off reading it until I had finished cleaning. Firstly, if Dad came out and saw me reading inside the cabin without having cleaned it first, I would be in BIG trouble. Secondly, I figured my parents might not approve of the book since it was about a ghost, so I decided I’d have more privacy reading it in the cabin of the pickup truck than in my own bedroom. They would merely assume that since I was still outside, I was still cleaning, and they wouldn’t bother me as they might if I were in my bedroom.
I cleaned the cabin as quickly and as thoroughly as I could. Then, I propped my legs up on the long, bench seat, leaned against the passenger-side door and read. And read. And read some more.
This book was creeping me out! I turned and locked the door behind me and the driver’s side door before I continued reading.
The more I read, the more frightened I became. I looked up and realized it was beginning to get dark outside. I checked the locks on the doors just to be sure, and then I read some more.
Not long after that, I looked up again, and saw that it was almost completely dark. I was now sitting all by myself in the back of the driveway, everybody was in the house, and I was terrified. I couldn’t read anymore because I was so scared, I was ready to cry. And now I had to unlock the door of the truck and run in the darkness all by myself to the side door.
I sat inside the cabin of the truck, staring out the windows, terrified that I would catch the glimpse of a ghost. The longer I waited, the harder it was to just DO IT!
Finally, I yanked up the lock of the passenger-side door, fell out of the cabin, slammed the door shut, sprinted to the side door of the house – almost tripping over myself onto the driveway in the process – and nearly ripped the side door off its hinges in my sheer and utter desperation just to get inside.
I finished the rest of the book the next day in the safe and comforting rays of the sun.