because I'm hungry, were the words that spewed
from my niece's mouth as we pulled into the restaurant's
parking lot. A fire truck and an ambulance -
both with lights flashing - were parked directly in front
of the entrance. I'm sorry there's a problem, she continued,
but I'm tired, my stomach's growling, and they need
to get out of my way
. The car echoed
in stunned silence, as the rest of our family digested
the heartless statements. What? she mused,
then smiled a familiarly impish grin. I'm kidding,
she said as the car erupted with relieved laughter.
But just to be safe, we should probably go
somewhere else
. She laughed along with us.
They might be responding to a case of food poisoning.