A Scottish Storyteller

The Hamster Wheel

This is a bit of a tragic tale of childhood loss. Try not to cry, there's a dear.

So once I went to this place in northumberland with my parents on holiday when I was just a kid and there was a campsite with an adventure playground. Rope Swings! Bridges over muddy streams! And...a REAL HUMAN-SIZED hamster wheel!

The sad thing was that I couldn't go on it because the big kids were all on it. You know... the kind of kid that had hair like a toilet brush and a neat line in scars. They would be on there day and night, night and day. I'd scamper over there after breakfast, excited to have a go! and they'd be there... Rocking back and forth, thundering the thing round and getting into fights in the thing and thus getting more scars. I'd run over as soon as we got back from each tour of a castle, each walk along a seashore, and they'd be there. After tea, I'd rush down with the jam still on my face, desperate to scamper round like a happy hamster... and there they'd be. Jumping up and down on eachother and hitting eachother with a stick, snarling and baring their teeth, rotted to the stumps by too many Spangles.

However I was determined. One night, I formulated a plan to get to go on the hamster wheel when the big scary kids wouldn't be on it.

The next morning, I got out of my bed about 6am and got dressed and sneaked out of the caravan and ran off (feeling REALLY guilty that my Mum and Dad might panic that I was gone). I opened the latch, padded down the steps, ran past the cottage with the same washing that had been out drying for 6 days already, sped past the empty boating pool with the crisp packets floating in it and positively TORE round the hedge that sheltered the adventure playground.

Birds twittered in the early morning sun. Each and every limb tingled with excitement. And there I saw it. I saw the hamster wheel.....

It moved slowly. Tantalisingly. And with heart-wrenching dissapointment, I heard a cry of laughter. Slowly I walked towards it, not truly believing that someone else would be up this early morning and on MY hamster wheel... I came up to the wheel and , small and meek, peeked inside it.

And there I saw them.


Laughing and running carefully with their skirts hitched up. Having the time of their lives.

I left.

I never got on that hamster wheel. We left for home the next day.

5 Responses to “The Hamster Wheel”

  1. # Blogger lost

    I had a similar experience with the computers in John Menzies in PD. (JM is no longer in existence in PD - shows you how long ago that is)
    The secondary school kids were ALWAYS on them ALL writing those silly scrolling messages long before Windows came on the go - we're talking Sinclair Spectrums here! And eventually I did get on - one day when I was at the dentists, I nipped in after my appointment and the place was empty!  

  2. # Blogger Poz


    I remember doing the same thing in Boots so that they bleeped randomly and put different colours randomly all over the screen (randomly).
    Of course i was incredibly bright and made them say something like

    "Bum! bum!

    Bum! Bum!
    Bum! Bum! Bum!"  

  3. # Anonymous Anonymous

    LOL....bloomin nuns hey...  

  4. # Anonymous Anonymous

    why was that a sad story  

  5. # Anonymous Anonymous

    Ramblings of Ray  

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