"Always be yourself, express yourself, have faith in yourself." --Bruce Lee The summer would begin a transformation in my life, or should I say my life was going to take a different path. School was going to start soon and my sophomore term would be a disaster. My Friends during this summer would help me to learn what peer pressure really was all about.
My friends Jeff and Randy lived next door to me. Jeff was a tall dark haired boy who was a year older than I. Randy was similar in build as his brother, who was the same age as I was, and he had blonde hair that was very long. Jeff was different from his brother Randy. Jeff was a daredevil. He liked to take chances that were sometimes dangerous. Randy was more laid back, and easy going. Summertime in Indiana was the paramount of school vacation. I lived on an old country road, where fields of corn touched the blue sky. I loved watching the wheat fields on windy days, as the wheat would sway back and forth.
That summer Jeff introduced me to Tom, a friend who was from the city. Tom seemed to be a smart person, or at least he put that persona on. During that summer we would hang out over at Jeff’s house, and I would soon learn the meaning of the phrases; “getting high” or “having a buzz”. I thought this was the coolest thing to do. I had no idea that what we were doing was against the law, or that it was even bad for my health. During that summer I spent most of my free time with Jeff and Tom. Everywhere we went, we had to walk. Sometimes we would visit some of Tom’s friends in the city. We would spend hours there, and the days would seem to just fly by.
One day we had just finished visiting one of Tom’s friends, and we were on our way back to Jeff’s house, when Tom suggested that we go to an abandoned farm house where we could stay at for a short while. I was unsure why Tom had suggested this, but I still went along. The home was far back into a corn field that made it secluded from the road. The house was old, and dilapidated. After a short time there, Tom began to run from room to room. At first I didn’t pay much attention to him, because I thought he was high. The air in the room began to have an overpowering odor that was making me very dizzy. Tom then began to scream at the top of his voice, “Get Out”, “Get Out”. It was then that I noticed that Tom had a gas can in his hand. I ran as fast as I could to get out of the house. When I looked back at the house, my eyes could not believe what they saw. The old dilapidated home was engulfed in flames. Fear had struck me, and all I knew was that I wanted to get out of there, and fast. We ran down the long isles of tall corn that stretched above my head. We kept running for a long time. The leaves from the corn stalks were pounding my face, and my eyes were filled with pollen from the silk tops. My heart was pounding in my chest, and my knees became very weak. The three of...