There I stood surrounded by Indians! Again! Okay, there was only one Indian last time, and he was just a boy. This time there were five! Five! I counted them twice! There sat five of them! Grown men! With tomahawks and war paint! On the bank just above where the skeleton had been. I know because now it was a dead body with two arrows sticking out of it. It had no hair, just a bloody skull.
They, the Indians, all five of them, seemed focused on a turkey roasting over a small fire. It smelled delicious. But when a boy pops into your world from nowhere, you react. And they did.
All five scrambled to their feet, picked up their weapons, and advanced toward me. Not real fast, but I didn’t care. I couldn’t seem to run, just stood there. One Indian seemed older than the rest. He held up his hand signaling them to stop. So, I tried a peaceful greeting in Hopelf’s language—he was an Indian so I thought it might work! It didn’t—might as well have been speaking Greek.
Next I tried English. That seemed to work. Well, at least with one of them. He looked at me suspiciously and then replied.
“How you get here? Where from you come?”
“Oh, no, here we go with the questions again.” I thought.
But this time I was more prepared and less afraid. Instead of answering, I dropped my knapsack off my shoulder, bowed—my hat fell off again—and reached into my pocket at the same time. I pulled out a soft ball, about the size of a ping pong ball, and what looked like a regular golf ball.
That’s when I began singing loudly,
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