Have you ever been afraid to try something new?
Maybe like a new food, or a different style.
Or even… being a normal kid?
I’ve never been a normal kid… Fame has taken over my life, which is why my agent suggested going to live with a normal family, the Parker family. I’ve been singing for years now, I’ve traveled the world through my performances, just me and my guitar.
I’m leaving for my world tour in a month. Which means I’ll have to leave the Parker family.
But I had to travel and go stay with their grandmother out in the country, and let’s just say that the trip did not go as expected.
This is my story. This story is about my Summer of Living.
“Well, I’ll just let you two settle in in your room! It’s an honor to have a celebrity in my home, Nora,” Grandma said as she turned and walked out to go cook dinner.
I slumped onto my sleeping bag, and pulled my laptop out of my bag.
“Well, look who already has their electronic device out! Nora, why don’t we go outside or something? You’re wasting time on the internet. We should go on a hike, there’s a beautiful trail somewhere around here!”
“No, I’m ok. I’ve got it all planned out, I’ll stay in this room, occasionally come out for meals! So if you ever need me, I’ll be in here! Nature is not my thing.”
And the next thing I knew, we were out on a hike.
“Isn’t this trail just so awesome? I think it is,” Kit spoke out once again,
“Well, yeah sort of. If you’re into that kind of thing,”
“And let me guess, you’re not into this kind of thing?”
I shrugged, “Not particularly,”
“You know, I notice that camera hanging around your neck. You like photography? Samantha pretty much says that all of us do, though the only one that’s really into it is Valerie,”
“Well if you must know, I take photos in case I ever go someplace interesting, and use them as inspiration for my songs.”
“Oh, so you’re suddenly interested in this hike?” Kit asked with a smirk on her face,
“Look, you’re stressing me out with your interrogation,”
“Well Sorry for being interested in my new sister,” Kit shot back with a hint of sarcasm.
“I’m not your sister,” I said through gritted teeth,
A few moments later, she spoke again, ” You know, you need to learn to enjoy yourself. Are you up for a challenge, Nora Brooks?”
“Depends on what it entails, ”
“Well, I challenge you to have a little fun this summer. If you don’t do these things, consider yourself un-fun. On this trip, if you want to have fun, you will fly a kite, go camping for an entire night in the wilderness, and go swimming in Mr. Forkley’s forbidden pool,”
“Wow, no offense, but none of those things sound fun. But alright, I’ll give it a try.”
I was proud of myself for coming back with a clever comment, because I was rather frightened at the thought of doing all the things on Kit’s little list.
The next afternoon, Kit had dragged me outside in the wilderness again.
“Are you ready to fly this kite?” she asked with a certain look on her face,
“Listen, I really don’t know how to fly a kite…” I said, hoping to get out of this,
“Yeah, well there’s a solution to that Nora, It’s called learning how,”
I was running through the field, as the wind pulled the kite up higher and higher, Kit screaming my name as she ran behind me.
I had to admit that it was a pretty kite. Too bad I couldn’t snap a photo, since I was kind of busy controlling it.
There was no way I would let Kit know, but it was kind of exhilerating. In a way.
I stared out at the big, blue sky that hung above our heads, leaves dappling it, creating our shade.
The fire burned and crackled. I backed away from the unnecessary warmth under the scorching California sun.
After spraying myself all over in bug repellent, I looked disdainfully at the sleeping bags we had hauled out here. I certainly was not looking forward to sleeping alongside insects.
“Do you know how to play any campfire songs, Nora?” Kit asked
“Well, not really, but I can play anything if you hum the tune to me,”
Kit began bursting out in a wild bout of humming. For some reason, this sounded like a seizure. But I got the general tune.
I began strumming my guitar to her melody, as she started to screech in the most hideous voice my ears had ever heard, “Oh my darling, Oh my darling, Oh my darling Clementine,”
In efforts of making her stop, I started to sing as well…
And then… I started laughing. Uncontrollably laughing. I could. not. stop. Giggles erupted from within me, and sure enough, Kit joined in.
Finally, Kit handed me a cupcake that her grandmother had packed us…
And I nearly choked as I stuffed it into my mouth…
With bits of laughter still popping out, I eyed the cooler…
Understanding my silent plea, Kit opened the cooler to reveal a menagerie of treats.
Eyebrows wiggling, she took out a shiny cardboard box with orange printing on it…
I took a bite of the ice cold treat, and sugary orange flavoring surged through my body.
As we sat there, Kit humming away, I giggling away…
I realized something. I was having fun.
Our feet scrambled across the uneven paving that was put along the side of Mr. Forkley’s pool. Mr. Forkley was a strict old man that had a large mansion a mile away from our grandmother’s house. We walked in out bare feet across the gravel, which was not one of Kit’s brightest ideas, and we now carried our towel and a lantern. Kit carried a lantern that we didn’t need because she said she wanted to look like a real adventurer, and then I said why would you want to do that, and she threatened to use the lantern as a weapon.
“See Nora! This isn’t so bad! It’s only like, 6 am, so Mr, Forkley won’t even notice we’re here!”
“Isn’t this like illegal or something?” I asked, knowing it probably was.
“Not if you’re having fun!”
I sighed. I’m pretty sure breaking the law doesn’t care whether or not you’re having fun.
But something else was nagging at my mind as I stared at the dark blue waters, I knew I couldn’t do this at all.
As soon as we reached the edge, Kit let out a screech, (Like that’s something we should be doing if the goal is to not wake up the creepy old man that we’re trespassing on,) and then she soared through the water, coming up only to beckon me with a, “Nora, come on in!”
I honestly did not want to go in. But I was determined to prove to this girl that I was fun. I was going to be fun.
But then something washed over me. I knew this was unsafe. I quietly ran over to the towel.
“What on earth are you doing Nora?”
I tried to keep them in, but they kept coming. I cried as I heard the sound of Kit pulling herself out of the water.
“Nora! What’s wrong?” she asked.
“I-I’m fine. You go have your fun. I don’t want to ruin it…” I said through my tears, “I can’t swim, Ok?!”
Suddenly, she pulled something out of her bag.
“You’re lucky Grandma made me bring this,” she said. I glanced at what she was holding.
She held up a bright pink life jacket that I guessed was Paisley’s.
I was shocked, “Your grandma knew about this?”
“Not really. I told her we were going to the lake in the morning. She made me bring this in something happens,”
“I never learned how to swim because I became famous when I was 10 years old. I never got the chance,” I said as I tried to swallow my tears.
“Hey, it’s ok. You don’t have to do this if you aren’t comfortable, I’m sorry for forcing you to do anything,”
“I’ve had fun. Thank you, Kit,”
I looked at her.
“But I’m ready to have some more fun! I’ll put that thing on, and I’ll come swimming with you.”
Kit let out a squeal of excitement, but cut it short as I shushed her.
And I had the best time of my entire life in that pool.
Kit and I played for hours. And suddenly we heard the deep, push of a screen door, and the shout of an old man saying “You kids get off my property!”
We giggled, raced to pick up our stuff, and scrambled back to the house.
I was perched in Grandma’s garden, strumming on my guitar. I had written a new song in my journal, thanks to Kit. She inspired me for a new album.
I stared lovingly at my blue guitar as it’s melody echoed through the backyard.
Nothing in the entire world could replace that feeling.
Until I heard footsetps.
“Woah, um that sounds really good, Nora,” Kit said quietly, careful not to interrupt the music.
“Thanks,” I said, cutting off the music.
“Listen,” she began, plopping herself down in front of me,
“I’m really sorry that I put so much pressure on you to do all this. I didn’t mean to ruin your summer. I hope you can forgive me,”
I stared at her.
“Of course I forgive you,” I said, “But I will never forget this amazing summer.”
“You taught me how to have fun for once, instead of only thinking about what’s next,” I said,
“And… I decided that I’m staying.”
She looked at me, confused, “What?”
“I’m staying with you and your sisters… forever.”
She pulled me into an embracing hug.
“I’m so excited to be your sister, Nora.”
“But I came out here for a different reason,”
She suddenly pulled something out of her bag,
It was a pink ukulele….
“Paisley gave it to me for my birthday… I hate the color, but I thought it’d be pretty cool to play,” then she looked up at me, “Do you know?”
“Actually, I love the ukulele! It was the second instrument I learned how to play… first was clarinet, and third was piano, and fourth was actually guitar,”
“Will you teach me how?” she asked hopefully,
I laughed, “Of course, sister!”
The rest of the afternoon was spent strumming ukulele’s, discussing tuning and chords, and best of all…
Living. Really truly living.
EEK! Nora is staying!
I really hope that you liked this mega photo story, I really worked hard on it, and it has taken me forever to write and take the pictures… but I’m really happy with the outcome!
What did you like most about this? The pictures? That kite? The outfits? Kit’s cool new hairstyle?
Let me know in the comments!
I love you all soo much and I want to thank you for 340 follows! It was literally December when it was 140.. Thank you! I am so grateful. This blog is something that I really enjoy posting on, and I can’t wait to see how far it goes. 😀