Breaking and Entering: A Story of Father-Son Bonding

As a child my family, like most American families at the time, would take a road trip somewhere during our vacation, stopping in various places along the way.  This time my parents took my sister and myself to Canada, with the obligatory stop at Mount Rushmore along the way. Once in Canada, we stayed at a townhouse hotel. That is, there was a series of townhomes that families could rent out, with a rental office at the entrance to the grounds.


One morning, my mother and sister went off to do something while my father and I went off somewhere else. There was only one key to the home, which my mother took with her. In the afternoon, my father and I were the first to return to the rented townhouse, and we quickly realized that we didn't have a key to get inside. Being young, impetuous, and most importantly, small, I offered to kick in a window screen, crawl through, and then open the front door from the inside. In my older years I don't know what possessed my father to agree to this plan, but agree he did.


I found the window that would have led into the basement rooms and kicked in the window. I realized my first mistake when the window turned out to be to the bathroom. I crawled in and replaced the window screen as best I could and went into the house. My dark green bag was on my bed and my sister's black bag was on hers, but something looked odd, though I couldn't place my finger on it. I went upstaits to the ground level and the kitchen looked nothing like I had remembered it that morning. Pressing on, I opened the door. I was expecting to see my father, but he wasn't there. Figuring that he was playing a joke on me, I stepped outside and saw him next door. I told him to come into the house, but he just looked at me, bewildered. 


I had broken into the wrong house.


At that point it was decided that we would simply wait for the key to our temporary home to return with the other half of the family. When that happened, and we told of how long we had been waiting outside (there was no mention of the breaking and entering done by a nine-year old), my mother simply asked us "Why didn't you go to the rental office and have them let you in?"

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