In 1950, when I was 4 and my sister was 3, we were in the Ben Franklin Store on Main Street in Madison, Maine. Our mother had taken us there on a fine fall afternoon while our father was out deer hunting.

For little kids, it was a pretty good walk from Nichols Street and we had to cross a couple of intersections. As Mom looked for sewing supplies, we waited near the front of the store. Suddenly, my eagle eye spied Dad’s ’38 Packard going by. Bored with the store, I told my sister, “Let’s go home and see if Dad got a deer!” She agreed and we ran out without telling Mom.

We crossed the streets, took the shortcut through the gully behind the library and arrived at our house. Dad, tired from getting up early and tromping through the woods of Concord, had fallen asleep in the living room. So, he didn’t hear us as we quietly hid under the kitchen table.

A few minutes later, Mom came in crying and breathlessly screaming, “I’ve lost the kids. I’ve lost them!” That woke Dad up, and we looked at each other with some recognition of what we had done.

Apprehensively, we came out from under the table, saw their relief and started to cry. Mom did, too, and Dad told us why we should never do anything like that again.

We had been lost but didn’t know it, because we knew where we were the whole time.

Read more stories from Maine at

Comments are not available on this story.