It’s Christmas and your parents decide to drag you hundreds of miles from the family home. You’re young and worried that Father Christmas may not find you, well that’s what I told them.
Staying at a farm on the slopes of Mount Kilimanjaro could be exciting, but when there are a dozen families and not enough beds, spending Christmas on the floor didn’t sound like fun. This was a good excuse for the adults to enjoy themselves, leaving the children to entertain themselves.
My parents had gone riding on the lower slopes of the mountain, a young girl and myself were being driven back to the farm. While cruising along in an open-sided Safari truck along a bush track, the girl and I debated its speed. The savannah landscape didn’t seem to be moving very fast (well in the distance anyway).
It’s at this point I said something stupid to my companion (not for the first or last time in my life). “I can run faster than the truck”. Then I did something stupid (again not for the last time).
I stepped through the open gap and into the void. Before I hit the ground, I had a quick glance over the driver’s shoulder and saw that we were travelling at 45 mph.
The driver screeched to a halt by the entrance of the farm and came running back to pick me up. With only cuts and bruises to show for my recklessness, the ‘child minders’ were relieved as well as baffled as to why I would do such a stupid thing. Parents were summoned, and another round of questioning ensued.
On Christmas Eve the adults partied while the children tried to sleep. Needless to say, they didn’t appreciate the early wake up call. It was midday by the time we found where Santa had hidden our presents, even though it looked as if Santa had too many sherries while wrapping them.