The Gutsy Girl: Escapades for Your Life of Epic Adventure
When I was thirteen, I read about a strange boat race. The boats were elaborate affairs—paddlewheels, schooners, rowboats—with one thing in common. They were kept afloat by milk cartons.
I wasn’t a sailor. I wasn’t a milk carton fanatic. But for some reason I loved this idea. I wanted to build a milk carton boat. Specifically a milk carton pirate ship. I envisioned a three-masted vessel, with a plank off to one side (of course) and a huge curved prow that ended in an eagle head. So I set about collecting milk cartons. I collected from my school cafeteria. I collected from my friends. I collected from my family. I soon became familiar with the look on their faces when I explained I was building a milk carton pirate ship. It was actually a combination of looks, all rolled into one. Hahaha, what a crazy idea, the expression said. And, Good luck, kid, but I don’t think it’s going to happen. And, Well, at least I’m getting rid of my milk cartons. Then at the very end of this facial conga dance, I always caught something else. Actually, that sounds like FUN. I wish I could do that, the final look exclaimed.
You can do it, I should have said back. But it’s hard to contradict the large cafeteria cook who smells of sliced ham and oatmeal. I didn’t say anything. But I understood the feeling.
I had been a shy and fearful kid. Many things had scared me. Bigger kids. Second grade. The elderly woman across the street. Being called on in class. The book Where the Wild Things Are. Woods at dusk. The way the bones in my hand crisscrossed.
Being scared was a terrible feeling, like sinking in quicksand. My stomach would drop, my feet would feel heavy, my head would prickle. Fear was an all-body experience. For a shy kid like me it was overwhelming.
Now I wanted to build a milk carton pirate ship and sail it along a body of water. Did I mention that I didn’t know how to sail? And I use the term “sail” loosely. I really mean “get pulled by the current to my destination.” I didn’t even know how to do that.
CHAPTER 1Dream Big, Make It Real
CHAPTER 2Even If People Laugh (Especially If People Laugh)
CHAPTER 3Just Put One Foot in Front of the Other
CHAPTER 4Aim High! But, Sometimes, Not Too High
CHAPTER 5What Goes Up, Might Come Down
CHAPTER 6It’s Pitch Dark, but You Can Still Find Your Way
CHAPTER 7Whoops! Thin Ice!
CHAPTER 8It’s Not What You Say, It’s What You Do
CHAPTER 9Plan Well, Then Expect the Unexpected
CHAPTER 10 Where There’s Smoke, There’s Fire, and Sometimes Kittens
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|Epub||May 14, 2016|
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