I Hear It Beep This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

   Beep! Beep! Oh, I know I hear it. I knew the moment the car gradually made itsway up the black pavement that Grandma had arrived.

Her brakes sound likethe brakes on a school bus. She takes her time, and slowly reaches for the pilesof white boxes, which I know are going to be packed with flowery underpants,Christmas socks and pink sweatshirts with kittens. All this would be fine if Iwere still a six-year-old. Her idea of me is a tiny girl with pigtails; she willnever change that theory.

When she hugs me, I stay a foot away, plantingmy feet on the ground somewhat like I am fencing, or karate chopping, or evenready for a dog to attack me.

She grabs me and hugs me until I am gagging.Her snap buttons stick straight into my chin, making marks that I can use toconnect the dots. Her perfume is a strong Calvin Klein, and it sticks to myclothes for a long time after she has left, and when she kisses me, her pinklipstick stains the center of my forehead.

Her pants are a navy blue andher blouse a bright pink -- they totally clash. And the odor of her purse smellslike a jelly Dunkin Donut that has been seeping away at the edges, and her twoadorable puppies who look at you once and jump onto your knee for a slushy kiss.Then she tells the same old boring story about my first encounter with CanobieLake Park and how I ran to every ride and had gas for a week. And as the sunlightfrom the windows hits the chandelier, I realize how much I love her. And nomatter how old I am, to my grandma I will always be the six-year-old with gas,and to her, our trip to Canobie Lake Park is a memory that lasts forever.

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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