Dia duit! Yesterday, Jess and I spent the day at one of Rangeley's local playgrounds. When we got there, I squealed with excitement and bolted towards a rock wall. I could almost feel Jess rolling her eyes and smiling behind me.
When I reached the base of the rock wall, however, my enthusiasm vanished. "Wow," I breathed nervously. "That sure is a long way up."
Jess soon appeared next to me. "That's nothing!" She shouted in disbelief. "You should have seen the the size of the rocks I climbed in Belize!"
"Well if you're so good at it, then why don't you race me up?" I challenged, trying to hide the frightened tone in my voice.
Jess grinned. "Sure! Ready, set, go!"
Within a matter of seconds we were both scaling the rock wall. Jess pulled ahead of me quickly, and reached the top when I was only half way up!
I pulled myself up out of breath as Jess cheered me on. "Ok, maybe you are a little fast..." I admitted reluctantly. "What now?"
"Well, since I won, I think you should push me down the slide." Jess replied with a smug look on her face.
"Fine," I pouted and followed her to the top of the slide.
When she sat down, I gave her the biggest push I could muster, hoping that she would go so fast that she'd fly off the end of the slide. An 11-year-old girl can only push so hard, however, and Jess skidded to a halt before her feet even touched the ground.
When it was my turn to slide down, Jess stood firmly in my path.
"Come on Saoirse!" She called.
"But I might run into you!" I yelled back. Yes, Jess and I ticked each other off sometimes, but I didn't want to slide right into her! What if she got really hurt?
"I'm not moving!"
"Ugh, tá sí stubborn." I whispered under my breath before closing my eyes and pulling myself forward, down the slide.
Just as I thought my feet were about to rocket into Jess' stomach, I flew off the slide and landed on the ground with a thump. I opened my eyes to see Jess standing right next to the slide, smiling mischievously. "You said you weren't moving!" I reminded her.
Jess shrugged and started walking away--towards the swings.
I ran after her and hopped on the only swing before she had the chance to. She glared at me with a scheming look in her eye. "I dare you to stand up and swing." She offered.
"That's easy!" I exclaimed, and slowly placed my feet where my bottom was supposed to be. I suddenly started to wobble, and before I knew what was happening, I was lying on my stomach!
At first, all I heard was someone squeak, "Where's my headband?!" It took me a moment to realize that it was me.
After the shock subsided, I heard someone laughing hysterically. I turned my head to spot Jess giggling so hard that she had to lean against a pole to keep from falling over!
When I recovered from my, erm, incident, my stomach started to growl. "Jess!" I shrieked. "Do you think that building over there has a vending machine? I'm starving!"
"I guess we'll just have to go and find out!" She called over her shoulder as she sprinted towards the big double doors.
Sure enough, inside was a HUGE vending machine! "Oooh, they have king sized peanut butter cups!" I squealed. "Jess, can you reach the number pad for me? Or, since you're 14, maybe you can pick me up and I can reach it?"
"Don't worry, I've got it." She said as she typed in E1. "Let's eat them outside. There was a picnic table by the playground."
Jess was quiet as we ate, and stared into space as if she were deep in thought. "Saoirse," She finally said. "I noticed that the building smelled as if somebody dunked it in chlorine. Do you think there's a pool in there?"
I frowned. "It looks like it's a Rec. Center, so maybe. But I do NOT want to go swimming! I didn't bring a swimsuit!"
"Can't we at least go check?" She pleaded.
I sighed, defeated. "Fine. But no swimming!"
Jess was right--inside there was a huge indoor pool, plus two hot tubs. She immediately raced towards the edge and felt the water with her hand. "It's so warm! I'm definitely going swimming, even if I have to get my clothes wet."
I slipped my flats off but didn't move away from the door. "Come here Saoirse!" Jess called. I told her that I refused to get my feet wet, so she put a towel down next to the pool.
"Come on, Saoirse. You have to go swimming!"
"No way!" I responded. "These are designer clothes! I'm NOT getting these wet!"
Jess came up behind me with an evil glint in her eyes. "Seriously, Saoirse. Live a little!"
"Well, I actually care about how I look!" I said coldly. Suddenly, something bizarre happened. Jess put her arms out, and pushed me!
My freckled arms started windmilling, and I almost balanced myself. But one wrong step backwards sent the water rushing up at me at a nauseating speed. Just before I hit the surface, I felt white hot anger and cold betrayal. But, the moment I was submerged, that all went away. I froze underwater for a few moments, bubbles rushing past me in slow motion. I couldn't believe. I was GLAD that Jess had pushed me in!
After a long, wet swim, I reached the staircase where Jess was waiting, laughing even harder than she had while I was swinging. Once I pulled my sopping body out of the water, I sped after Jess. "It's your turn!" I shouted, and shoved her into the pool.
We spent the rest of the afternoon swimming, despite the lack of swimsuits. Before we went home, we sat down in the grass near the playground to dry off.
Jess bumped shoulders with me and said "You're pretty awesome, you know that?"
I bumped mine right back saying "You're not so bad yourself."