Final Diagnostic Essay Draft
We Were Glad It Wasn’t Real
My family has vacationed with my Uncle Randy and his family for years. We were in a remote part of the Blue Ridge Mountains on our way to a cabin we had never rented before. It was late in the day and we weren’t sure how far away we were from our destination so everyone was plastered to the windows of the van looking for signs of the cabin paradise my dad had rented for the combined family tribes. Our imaginations were running wild with ideas about what our vacation was going to be like. We made up interesting stories about some of the cabins that we could see from the road. The funniest fiasco we imagined was set in a red shack that was down the road from the cabin where we actually stayed.
We agreed that it all began when we arrived in front of the red shack with a hand pump out front. Everyone gave my dad and uncle sly smiles when they announced, “This is it, everyone out.” We figured that they were tricking us. We were still hoping that they were pulling our leg as we entered the cabin and noticed a funny smell. There was an ear piercing scream when my Aunt Lynne discovered the infestation, which turned out to also be the source of the smell. In front of the fireplace belly up, lay the infestation, which was a small, dead field mouse with a smell that was not in proportion to the size of its remains. Airing out the cabin took no time at all because most of the windows worked. Everyone was pretty unhappy with their first impressions of the place but only a few of the younger kids let out their feelings that night.
We all woke each other up at about the same time. The supply of water we had brought in the cars was only getting lower so we all walked what must have been 50 feet from the front door to the pump to see if it actually worked. First my brothers tried to get the handle to move, and then my uncle tried his hand. It wouldn’t budge. I gave it a try and I could have sworn that someone was pushing right back just as hard as I was shoving down. Finally, after what could have been twenty minutes, my mom decided that it was time to make breakfast. The aunts and kids headed back to the cabin and soon everything was ready to eat. My mom yelled that the pump should be abandoned and washing up should commence and use as little water as possible. Near the end of breakfast someone noticed a piece of paper in a drawer that had been bumped open. The content of the note follows,
Hello and welcome to the cabin. Hope you make yourself at home. The pump is strictly ornamental. Although, it did work at some point in history it no longer draws water. When I stay up here I either filter water out of (the word ditch was crossed out here and still legible) the stream up the hill or buy it at the tourist gouging grocer down the road. Hunting season is not respected so watch yourself in the woods, and keep any dogs tied up. That is everything I can think of at the moment; hope you have a nice stay.
All ten of us ran outside immediately to look for Hoover our dog in order to tie him up. After a while a few of us returned to the cabin exhausted and dogless to get a drink because all of our shouting for Hoover had made us hoarse. We found him passed out on the floor and all of the abandoned breakfast plates were licked clean.
About three o’clock gunshots were heard so close that we were looking at our clothes for bullet holes. All the kids ran inside the cabin and lay down on the floor. Frank, my dad, and Uncle Randy grabbed bright clothing: Aunt Lynne’s hot pink night dress and an orange tee shirt. They went around to the side of the cabin facing the woods waving the pink night dress and came face to face with the biggest buck this side of Canada. It was the largest piece of painted styrofoam that they had ever seen. There were targets painted on the side facing the cabin, but none were on the other side facing the woods which must have looked too good to be real from far away. They knocked the target to the ground and hollered for the firing to cease in the direction of the cabin. Apologies did not drift out the woods but the firing stopped short. By the time dad and Uncle Randy got back inside the cabin my mom and Aunt Lynne had everything packed that had been taken out of the car the night before and ready to be loaded. We were down the mountain and on to a major highway before dark: so ended our 24 hour imaginary stay in the red shack. We were glad it wasn’t real.
We didn’t have time to come up with a better ending because right as we were finishing the story we arrived at the cabin we were actually staying at for the week of our vacation.