The Girls' Nap Rudely Interrupted

By:  Dr. Rodney T. Hard

I attended boarding school for my 9th grade, 11th grade, and 12th grade.  Korea Christian Academy was about 125 miles (as the crow flies) away from home on the outskirts of Taejon City.  I travelled by steam engine train for six hours to get to Taejon and then took a bus outside the city to O-Jung Dong.  Every six weeks or so, I took the train back home to Pusan for a weekend with the family.  There were only two English speaking missionary high schools in Korea and KCA was the closest one.

You can see from the senior yearbook picture of me lighting a fire in the stove under my girlfriend Pam that I was definitely a mischievous young man.  I loved pulling pranks on fellow students and teachers.  The best prank of all was during my Freshman year when both my older brother Sterling and I were both at KCA at the same time.

One Sunday, after church and then lunch in the school cafeteria, the girls all went to the dormitory to take a nap.  Some of us boys, including Sterling and me, went hunting for mice and rats.  We used to have contests as to who could kill the most rats and mice in one week.  We would even get up before daybreak, several hours before school started, to go hunting in the fields and ditches.  We collected the tails and kept them on a string hanging in our dormitory room windows.

This particular Sunday afternoon, we were in the field to the left of the red brick dormitory (which is behind the school building in the foreground of the picture) combing through a large compost pile for nests of mice and rats.  We found several nests of baby mice on one side of the pile and a big bundle of baby garter snakes on the other side, coiled together, warming themselves in the sun.

Several boys in our group took the snakes to the front door of the girls' dormitory and let the snakes loose in their hallway.  When the snakes hit the cold cement floor, they became very active and started scattering  in every direction down the hallway and under the doors to the girls' rooms.

In the meantime, the rest of us went to the side of the dorm (where you can see the windows of the red brick building facing you) and shot the baby mice out of our slingshots at the girls' windows.  The girls woke up when they heard the mice splattering against their windows.  Seeing the mice hit the windows and slide down the windows in bloody streaks, they screamed and jumped out of their beds.

To our sheer delight, we heard the second series of even louder shrieks and screams when the girls went running out of their rooms into the hallway filled with little writhing snakes. 

We all got in trouble with the principal and, of course, the girls, but it was more than worth it.

Dr. Rodney T. Hard