Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Barbeque/Cookout (09/06/12)
TITLE: One Flew Over the Barbeque Pit
By lynn gipson
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Cathy’s original plan was to leave the girls with her sister during the day, as she did on most days while they both worked. She knew Jimmy couldn’t boil water, and he’d never had the sole responsibility of the girls for more than a day. He owned his business and could work from home if he chose to, but how would he manage it all?
“Nonsense, how much trouble can it be? They are my daughters and they will stay with me! I can work from here.”
“Jimmy, they are six and seven years old. Are you sure you can work and take care of them too? What about their meals? You know you can’t cook.”
“I can cook, and we will all be fine. I want this time with my girls.”
This past week had been one of cooking mishaps. The girls told him they hoped Mom came home before they starved to death. Runny eggs, burned bacon, and rubber spaghetti. Even his grilled chicken tasted funny. They begged for pizza, but their father said pizza wasn’t good for them.
“Neither is his cooking!” Blair whispered to Emma, who put her hand over her stomach and groaned.
Jimmy had a great time with his daughters. They went to church and Sunday school. He took them shopping for school clothes, and let them pick out their own. They swam in the pool almost every day and went to the zoo. It would have been a perfect week but for his terrible cooking.
It was Thursday and Mom would be home tomorrow, thank goodness. The girls had already planned for her to cook their favorite meal of macaroni and cheese. Dad’s stuck to the pan and was gooey.
Jimmy was pondering what to do about dinner. He would also be glad to taste his wife’s cooking again. He had to admit his ineptness at it. He just didn’t have a way with food.
Blair and Emma once again begged for pizza.
“C’mon Dad, Puleeze! You know I love you, but Emma and I need something to eat that agrees with out stomachs!”
Jimmy was determined to cook something his girls would like. It was a matter of pride. So he suggested another grill out instead. He knew how to grill hamburgers. He was good at that!
The girls both groaned. Dad’s hamburgers were awful. Burned on the outside and dry on the inside. Blair sighed and Emma pouted, but Jimmy went outside and fired up the grill.
He saw the bird sitting on the fence watching him from a distance. It was a beautiful blue bird, and Jimmy just loved to take pictures of birds. As soon as he got the hamburgers sizzling, he darted inside and got his camera.
When he came back the bird was still sitting on the fence, seeming to watch Jimmy’s every move. As he raised his camera to eye level the bird took flight straight towards the grill and suddenly deposited a huge glop of white substance all over the hamburgers. Splat!
“No! No! My hamburgers!” Jimmy shouted. What a mess! How in the world did all that come out of one little bird?
Jimmy turned off the grill, threw the burgers away, and went inside to see the girls rolling in the floor with laughter. They had seen it all and thought it was the funniest thing in the world.
“Okay, who wants pizza?” Jimmy gave up.
“Yaay! Dad! We do!”
An hour later all three of them were pigging out on the first delicious thing besides peanut butter and jelly they had tasted since Mom left. Jimmy smiled as he watched his two girls eat. They told him he was the best dad ever, and he agreed. He knew he was a great dad. He was just an awful cook.
That night in their room the girls giggled with glee over the fact that Mom would be home tomorrow. They certainly had a lot to tell her!
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