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Some Rainy Day This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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      Everyone has a certain place, a certain smell, certain people, and certain memories that sum up their childhood. Mine is my grandparents’ farm in Iowa. It is a bug-infested old place, but we love it. My grandpa was born there, and my mom grew up there. I never lived there, but I too grew up on that farm. I remember afternoons when we would spread old sheets under the mulberry trees then climb into their large branches and jump and laugh as the purple berries plopped onto the sheets. Those were the nights we would go to bed dyed purple from face to toes.

My best friends growing up were my big sister Jessie and my cousins. We played cowboys and Indians and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. We got into a lot of trouble and I have the scars to prove it. I know every inch of that farm, from the swing up in the attic all the way down to the lake. When I was little, Grandma and Grandpa’s meant cats and dogs, playing in the barns and trees, fishing and swimming, and a breakfast so amazing that you can only imagine it.

We don’t play in the barns much anymore. Now trips to the farm are quiet times to read and play cards. The farm just doesn’t have the magic without Grandpa. He was so silly and playful. He told the best stories, even though most weren’t true. As we got older it was easier to pick out the fibs, plus we would notice Grandma shaking her head.

My grandpa had three very large scars across his chest. According to my mother, they were from fighting a tiger, but he told me they were from a bear fight. I recall hearing him tell my little sister that he wrestled a crocodile to get them. To tell you the truth, I don’t want to know how he really got them. Grandpa always made jokes. Grabbing your neck from behind he would growl, “You’re lucky I wasn’t a mad bear!”

My grandma is a wonderful person. She always has cookies ready and will help you with anything. She thinks all her grandchildren are perfect, even if it takes her five tries to call us by the right name, which happens when there are 30 people staying at her house. Grandma would watch one of my sports games and, whether we won or lost, say, “I was only watching you and you played so well.”

Grandma has had to run the farm for a long time now, ever since my grandpa became weak. She showed so much courage when he passed on. My grandpa was so stubborn he didn’t use a wheelchair or walker until the month he died. He spent his last day doing what he loved most: watching my cousin’s baseball game. His funeral was beautiful. I sang with my mother even though I was terrified. My grandma said it was wonderful and reminded me that I was just singing to my grandpa in the front row.

Now when we go to the farm, it’s not the same. My amazing grandma is still there but Grandpa isn’t sitting in front of the house. Now his chair is empty, but it reminds me of all my great memories of him and our long talks. They are both happy now that he isn’t in pain anymore. And I know someday I will see him again, because of his last words to me. When I told him I loved him and would see him soon, like always, he replied, “I’ll see you on a rainy day.”

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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