Spotlight

Best of Wadadli Pen: Road Trip to Paradise

by Angelica O’Donoghue

First place winner, Wadadli Pen 2006.

“Cuckoo doodle doo…cuckoo doodle doo…”

You don’t have to tell me twice, I’ve been waiting for this day for one whole week, seven whole days…and now it’s FINALLY here! I sprung up instantly energized and stretched. For the first time this week I was enjoying the feel of the cool breeze and the warm rays of the rising sun on my body. I ran over to my older brother to wake him.

“Get up, get up, it’s today. Today’s the day, Dee. Today I get to go on the big road trip that everybody talks about! Yippee!” I all but shouted as I jumped up and down circling him.

My enthusiasm was thrown back at me as Dee grumbled a snide remark, rolled his eyes and turned his back to me.

“Awwww, come on Dee! Aren’t you the least bit happy for me?”

“Just leave me alone Jay…please just leave me alone!”

“You’re just jealous,” I grumbled as I turned away.

Dee wasn’t going on the field trip today. Grandpa Joe said he wasn’t coming this time. Dee was disobedient, he wouldn’t eat his supper or take his vitamins, and only the obedient ones who ate their supper and did as they were told were taken on these special trips as a reward. This week, only a few were chosen for this trip and I felt just GREAT that I was among them! Dee is not going to spoil this day for me, no way. This is going to be the most memorable and happiest day of my life, I just know it! I grinned to myself as I skipped outside to look for Emm. Emm is my best friend, has been ever since I can remember. We were born just days apart, and we were both really excited about this trip.

The place was buzzing with excitement when I got outside. Everyone going on the trip was excited, well…most of them were. Those not coming along were whispering amongst themselves. “They all must be so jealous,” I thought to myself. “Soon,” I whispered softly as my eyes searched for Emm, “very soon we’ll be on our way.” I spotted Emm and ran over to meet him.

“Hey Emm! Ya all set an ready fu go?”

“How ya mean, Jay. Ya tink a you wan cyan’t wait?”

We both laughed, jumping up and down, as our excitement soared to yet another level.

“EVERYBODY IN!” boomed Grandpa Joe’s gruff voice.

Emm and I were the first in line, well… I was first and Emm second. We were placed in the back of Grandpa Joe’s old pick-up and at last, the long awaited journey began. The old pick-up grumbled to life and began to move slowly down the old dusty road.

“KFC! KFC! KFC” I kept saying that over and over in my head just so I wouldn’t forget it… as if I could. I had never been to KFC, but I sure heard a lot about it. That was all we chickens ever spoke about.

KFC is chicken’s paradise, the land of milkshake and honey mustard. Many have gone before and none have returned. They say once you go Colonel your stay is eternal, but who would want to come back to Joe’s Chicken Farm after you’ve made it past those red and white gates of KFC.

“I can’t wait to be at KFC”. I smiled again to myself, and as I looked back at Dee, he was grinning.

“That’s the spirit Dee; you’ll make it to the other side eventually. Just be obedient and do as Grandpa Joe says. Eat your meals, take your vitamins, go to bed on time and one day you’ll join me on the other side. Till we ‘meat’ again my brother, till we ‘meat’ again.”


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Angelica O’Donoghue was 17 years old and attending Antigua State College when she wrote "Road Trip to Paradise." A Princess Margaret Secondary School alumnus, she excelled in national debating competitions and was a member of the junior cabinet and junior parliament, with aspirations of someday being prime minister of Antigua and Barbuda. Angelica remains active in the local literary scene.

Copyright of the winning Wadadli Youth Pen Prize stories and/or art work featured on this site belongs to the creators of the individual works. Anansesem's editors played no part in the Wadadli Pen judging process. Anansesem's editors have not edited or adjusted the stories or artwork in any way.

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About Anansesem

Anansesem is an online magazine of Caribbean children's and young adult literature by adults and children. We strive to bring you the best in news, reviews and creative content from the world of Caribbean children's publishing.
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