A Soaking Rain
Once upon a time, there lived a very nice lady with a very strange daughter. The very strange daughter’s name was Lisa. Everyone agreed that Lisa was very strange, but not because of her looks. It was because of her dreams. You see, every night Lisa dreamed a strange dream. And every morning she told everyone she saw about her strange dreams.
Lisa knew her dreams were not real. “They’re just dreams,” she said. “They don’t scare me. In fact, I think they’re funny.” One night Lisa dreamed that she could fly. But she knew she couldn’t really fly. One night she dreamed she was a cat. But she knew she wasn’t really a cat.
Lisa’s mother was very proud of her daughter’s rich imagination. “Your dreams are always interesting. Just make sure you don’t ever confuse your dreams with reality and you’ll be just fine.”
One day when Lisa woke up, her mother said, “I have a special surprise for you. We’re going to a nice restaurant for dinner because today is your birthday.”
“That’s great,” said Lisa, “but first would you like to hear about my dream?”
“Not right now,” said her mother, “we’ve got lots of chores to do before we go for dinner.”
“Okay,” said Lisa, “I just hope I don’t forget to tell you about my dream later on.”
The day passed rather quickly as they did all their chores and soon enough, they went to the restaurant. As a special treat Lisa and her mom both ordered lamb chops with mashed potatoes and mixed vegetables. Dinner was delicious. But best of all, because it was her birthday, Lisa was allowed to order a special dessert, Cheesecake.
“I don’t think I can eat it right now. I’m so full from dinner. May I take it home with me?” she asked the waitress. The waitress said, “Of course you can. I’ll wrap it up for you.”
When Lisa and her mother left the restaurant they saw it was raining quite hard. So they waited a while hoping the rain would stop or at least slow down. But the longer they waited, the harder the rain rained.
“I’ve never seen such a soaking rain before in my life,” said her mother.
“What’s a soaking rain?” said Lisa. “I’ve never heard of a soaking rain. Is that a different kind of rain?”
“It’s just an expression,” said her mother. “See how hard the rain is falling, and yet it’s soaking right into the ground. It’s not even making puddles. Why we’ll be soaked to the skin.”
“Soaked to the skin,” thought Lisa, “that sounds scary, almost like one of my dreams. I wonder what would happen if we were soaked to our skins.”
Just then there was a clap of thunder and the rain rained even harder.
“We can’t wait any longer. I’m afraid it’s liable to get even worse,” her mother said. “Let’s make a run for the car.”
“Just a minute,” said Lisa as she tucked her Cheesecake under her blouse to keep it from getting soaked. “Okay, let’s go!”
They ran as fast as they could. They jumped into the car and they were off. When they got home, they ran from the car to the house. When they got inside, Lisa’s mother said, “We’re soaked to the skin. You better take a shower and change your clothes.”
“Oh gosh,” thought Lisa, “I hoped that wouldn’t happen.” Lisa was afraid now that she’d been soaked to her skin. “If I’ve been soaked to my skin, I wonder why Mother wants me to take a shower. Will the shower wash off my wetness?” But Lisa was too scared to question this point. Certainly her mother knew how to treat a skin-soaking rain.
Lisa took a shower, dried herself off, and hung her rain soaked clothes in the bathroom. She changed into a new outfit and went downstairs.
When Lisa walked into the kitchen, her mother looked at her and seemed puzzled. “Did you forget to dry yourself off?”
“What do you mean?” said Lisa.
“Why just look at yourself. You’re soaking wet.”
Lisa did look at herself. Sure enough, her hair, her blouse, her pants, even her shoes and socks were soaking wet. She looked like she had just come in from the soaking rain.
“I don’t understand,” said Lisa, “I know I dried myself after my shower. In fact, the towel was soaking wet. Maybe I’m soaked to my skin and all that water keeps coming out.”
“Well, take a new towel, dry yourself off, and change your clothes again.”
Lisa did as her mother instructed, but by the time she got back to the kitchen, she had soaked right through her clothes again. But this time she noticed that one spot on her was dry. It was just above her belly - where she’d put the Cheesecake to keep it from getting soaked.
This is very strange, thought Lisa, and she showed her mother the one dry spot. “Very strange indeed,” said Lisa’s mother. “Now march right back upstairs and dry yourself off.”
This time Lisa’s mother came along to observe. Sure enough Lisa dried herself off for the third time, but by the time she put new clothes on, they were soaked to the skin once again.
Lisa said, “except for my belly! Look at this Mom. I think I have an idea. Follow me.”
Lisa went back to the kitchen. Her shoes squished as she walked leaving a trail of water behind her. When they got to the kitchen Lisa said, “Where is my Cheesecake?”
“What are you talking about?” said her mother.
“The Cheesecake I brought home from the restaurant. Where is it?”
“It’s right here on the table. I haven’t even had time to put it away.”
“Okay,” said Lisa, “now stand back and don’t try to stop me.”
With one smooth motion, Lisa smeared the Cheesecake all over her body. “It’s as dry as a sponge,” she said, “and look at me now – not a drop of water anywhere.”
And just at that moment, Lisa woke up and said, “Mommy, wait till I tell you the strange dream I just had.”
“Not right now,” said her mother, “we’ve got lots of chores to do before we go for dinner. Today is your birthday.”
This story was inspired by Lisa Fisher and written by Yale Schwartz. Look for the full volume of bedtime stories in “Lisa’s Dreams” coming soon to a bookstore near you.
Copyright © Yale Schwartz, 2005