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13 – No, you turn it on

“Okay, turn it on.”

“No, you turn it on.”


“You turn it on.”

“Mom. If I let go of the igniter it’ll stop sparking again and we’ll never get the thing lit. Just turn the burner on.”

“I don’t want to.”

There’s a certain adrenaline rush that can only be achieved by standing over an unfamiliar propane stove with a wonky igniter that only sparks in fits and starts, waiting to see just how much gas finally catches fire. Frankly, it doesn’t matter which one of us actually turns it on, since we’re both standing right next to it.

“Fine. I’ll turn it on, but don’t grumble at me if the igniter stops again and we’re stuck with the microwave.”

Thankfully, we succeed in making fire without blowing ourselves up, but it’s still a little tense. This is not a trustworthy propane stove. It may turn on us at any moment.

“What’s that noise?”

“I think it’s the vent.”

“No it’s not.”

“It isn’t? Oh dear.”

“It’s a weird kind of crackling noise. Is something other than the burner on fire?”

“I don’t know what it is. Should I turn off the stove?”

I glance out the window.

We’ve been in a dry climate for so long we’ve apparently forgotten what rain sounds like. Though to be fair, the vent was loud and rain falling on an RV roof doesn’t really sound like rain. Turns out it sounds almost exactly like a wonky igniter on a propane stove.


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