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Boxes Full of Roxes – by Phoenix Slobodian

Good Saturday afternoon to you. It’s me, Phoenix…with my new braces.

Nana called me BraceFace as soon as she saw me because that’s what she was called when she wore braces hundreds of years ago.

Little did I know that coming to Papak and Nana’s house this weekend would actually be a working weekend for me. I thought I was merely coming to watch Pirates of the Caribbean with Papak BUT NO….my grandparents had different plans. As soon as I arrived, Nana filled me in.

“Phoenix, you’re going to help us do some rock haulin’.”

I’ve never done this kind of physical labour before but I was quite intrigued with the possibility of making some money. My job? Put rocks in my backpack, run across the front and side lawn, down the stairs, across the back lawn and dump the rocks into the shoreline. Then run back up to the driveway and repeat.

35 times, in fact.

At first, it was easy.

About 17 runs in, Nana started to give me a 5 second head start to my job, while she pushed the wheelbarrow to the stairs. I was actually beating Nana a lot and I felt quite proud. Nana told me that this exercise was the perfect blend of cardio and weightlifting.

I was thinking about payment and decided to try out the suggestion, “How about $1.00 per load?” But Nana and Papak told me that it was too much so they came back with a counter offer, “We will pay you 50¢/load.”  I was hoping there was some room for negotiation so we settled on a flat $20.00 for last night and this morning’s work.

By the end of it all, my shoulders were pretty sore but it was definitely worth it.

Last evening, Nana and Papak’s neighbour was watching me get loaded down with rocks and he yelled from his front porch,“Hey, Phoenix, I bet this wasn’t what you were expecting when your Nana said you were going to a rock concert, right?”

Nope.  It sure wasn’t.

Even though I came for the movie, I was very happy to help Nana and Papak because they’re old.

Gotta’ work on some scripture memory for school now and then I’m off to the movies!

Talk to you soon!

Signing off,

Phoenix Slobodian



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