Six year old Caroline tossed and turned in bed. The closet light was left on, the closet light was always left on. I heard a sound. A creak of the floor in the hallway. Probably my older sister was doubtless still awake. But what if it wasn’t? What if it was someone coming …someone coming for ME?
What if it was Nazis? What if the Nazis were coming to take me to a camp, a torture camp? Or what if it was Freddy Krueger and his knife nails? I had never seen the movie, but I knew he was something to be feared.
That pretty much summed it up. The fears of my six year old life, Nazis and Freddy Krueger. But I was scared, I was TERRIFIED!
How? How could I escape them? When they did, as they surely would, come for me, how could I escape? I was pretty sure climbing into the attic would do the trick, but there just wasn’t the time. And besides, how would I hide the ladder that was needed to reach those heights? Maybe if I punched them in the nose? I saw that once on an Oprah episode my mom was watching, punch them in the nose and break it. That would work for Freddy, but the Nazis, they traveled in groups. I just couldn’t break all those noses.
And then there was a lightbulb, a bright light from heaven shone into my brilliant mind.
As a child we had a “bucket,” a small wooden container that my parents kept extra change in. Occasionally, I could reach my little hands into that pot of gold and draw out fifty cents. Fifty glorious cents to buy an ice cream at school.
And there was my answer. If those damn Nazis came for me, I would tell them, “If you let me go, I will tell you where our money is.”
I saw their conniving faces taking the bait. I saw them chosing those glorious riches over me. I saw the success of my plan. And I rolled over and I fell asleep.