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Hayride Of Horror PDF Print E-mail
Written by Deborah Hamlin   
Tuesday, 10 November 2009 09:39

Halloween time is among us again, and I’ve elected to encourage my children to express themselves creatively by allowing them to make their own choices.   That, and the fact that they cringe at all of my suggestions.
I have no idea when they went from furry ears and painted whiskers to characters from movies from which I’ve never even heard.     My son asked me the other day to find something called Salacious Crumb from Star Wars.   I thought maybe that was Fergie’s original name before she was Fergalicious, but apparently not. Therefore, I am no longer the authority to which they turn.   Mama has not only left the building, she was escorted out against her will.
I’m just glad to see that they’ve matured and gotten over last Halloween.   My daughters were six and seven at the time, and the little town in which we live was hosting a hayride.   Sounded innocent enough.   But that was before the zombie fell out of the sky.
I took my little Tinkerbell and Princess Jasmine hand in hand down the cobblestone street of our charming town to the overstuffed trailer that held the most adorable array of cowboys, brides, and ballerinas.   This was trailer was the vehicle for the hayride and would later be named the 'hayride of horror'.
We began our ride down the maple lined streets and into the town cemetery.   As soon as we entered the gates, a few teen-aged volunteers with masks or sheets would dart out from behind a tombstone here and there to the delightful squeal of the children on the trailer.   My daughters were having a great time screaming at the ‘monsters’ until they spotted the 9' zombie hanging from a rope, tied to a tree.
It was just a dummy on a pulley, of course, but once we were driving under the tree limb, it began to slide down the rope, meaning to brush against the kids on its descent.   The idea may have looked good in theory, but no one could have foreseen what happen next.   It’s still a blur to me today.
As the zombie made it’s way down, the legs dragged on the ground and quickly got caught under the wheels of the trailer.   The rope was pulled tight and made a loud whining sound as the zombie began flopping wildly as it was being torn apart.
We watched in horror as the zombie fell from the sky and was dragged behind our charming hayride of Death.   We dragged the mutilated cloth corpse with it’s head and arms flailing behind the tires and the kids screaming in terror.   The ride was stopped so the driver could try to untangle the zombie remains, and the moment we stopped, every child on that ride scattered in every direction.   I didn’t even see my girls hit the ground running when I noticed they weren’t sitting next to me anymore.
So there we were, a dozen parents looking for their kids in the cemetery at dusk.   Keep in mind that the cemetery still had the monsters hiding behind tombstones as we tried to find the kids before the kids could find the monsters.   Every so often we would hear a shriek that told us we failed.   It took a good twenty minutes to gather all of the kids and at least another fifteen minutes to calm them down.   The cemetery was dark by then and they had cried themselves hoarse.
Ah, the childhood memories I helped create for my children!   I don’t see how I could possibly top last year’s event.   I mean, it took me three hours, scaling of a tree, and two scraped knees to rig that zombie quartering.

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