Then a certain “UFO, Hanger 18, Roswell, New Mexico” History channel program entered the picture. Jamison was immediately intrigued. “Hey, Mom, that is why there are all of those weird alien pictures and signs in Roswell. Remember they have that UFO shaped McDonalds?” I was informed that, “The History Channel said they had an actual UFO there in 1947, but the government did some kind of a cover up.” Jamison referenced our trips through Roswell on the way to Colorado, and my adamant refusals to stay at a hotel with my statement, “Roswell kind of creeps me out with the all of their alien references.” Jamison happened upon this show at a most unfortunate time. He and John were preparing to drive through Roswell on their annual Land Cruiser primitive camping trek to Colorado. John regaled to me the bombardment of UFO facts he endured during the drive though New Mexico. He changed his iPhone ring to be that weird, creepy alien sounding ring which made Jamison jump at first, still irritates him, and makes John laugh. Since Austin and I opted out of extreme camping trip this year, we were spared all of the UFO details. Since I am the one at home with the boys all summer, I have been privy to all of the History channel facts. It felt good to share this information overload with John, especially since Jamison doesn’t just tell you the information but he also quizzes you to make sure that you are paying close attention.
When they arrived back home from Colorado Jamison’s interest in space, UFOs, and government conspiracies was still in overdrive. He gobbled up any television show that mentioned space travel, retrieved all of his Solar System books off of his bookshelf, and googled “UFO in Roswell,” “Hangar 18,” and “Government Conspiracies” on his iPad. But, as with most things during the summer, his enthusiasm died down as he was bent on enjoying his last few tidbits of summer.
One evening Jamison had been at his best friend’s house enjoying their swimming pool just a little too much. It had been one of those summer days. Austin and I had already been to Victoria running all of errands that I save for a trip to town as well as grocery shopping. I am not talking about “a run to the store for a few things type of shopping.” I am talking about the type of grocery shopping, “because you won’t be in town for another two weeks, so get everything you might possibly need or want,” type of shopping. After our trip, we were tired when we drove the short distance to pick Jamison up from his friend’s house.
As we pulled into our cattle guard back on our ranch road, I immediately slammed on my brakes. The boys and I looked with our mouths open as wide as they would go, and with eyes that we forced not to blink. Our heads started on the left side of my windshield, followed slowly, and finally stopped on the right side. We sat silent for a while before Austin and Jamison broke the silence, and in unison they muttered a multi-syllable “Whoa.”
Living at the ranch we are blessed with many starry nights. I have seen more falling stars that I can count, blood moons, satellites, eclipses, and the occasional comet sighting. However, what the boys and I saw cannot be described as a falling star as it had a tail that stretched across my windshield and looked like it landed right beside our barn. I know that it sounds ludicrous to say it landed on the ranch, but I must confess that boys and I did drive around just to check. Whatever we saw was white hot, and shot across the sky with a tail following behind. Any tiredness I was experiencing was gone as my hands were shaking on the steering wheel. When the boys regained their voices they were talking non-stop in excited spurts. Then Jamison, who was sitting in the middle of the backseat, stretched his arms wide to grab my shoulder in one hand and Austin’s in another and asked, “We all really saw that, right?” After a few deep breaths and intense eye blinking, we sped up to the house to see if John who was outside witnessed “the thing,” as we referred to it. He hadn’t seen it. A phone call to Mimi and Popsy who were outside sitting on their front porch revealed that they also did not see “the thing.”
The boys immediately searched the internet to see if any comets or other events were posted on to internet and nothing was reported. Jamison determined that he and Austin would “remember ‘the thing’ as long as they lived” and “they would tell their kids about what they saw one day.” “We saw something that no one else saw,” Jamison determined. Austin then reminded him that no one else reported it, but that doesn’t mean no one else saw it. After deep contemplation and a few head shakes, Jamison deeply sighed and shook his blond head. “Yep, it is just another one of those government conspiracies all over again.”