My First CaningWhen I was 12, my mother took my brother and me to see our Aunt's new home. She had a daughter, Sally, about two years older than I was and another, Amanda, a little younger than my brother. We children had gone out to explore the rather large garden, having been told very clearly to stay away from next-door's apple tree. In one ear and out the other. The tree was laden with apples ripe for the picking so what's a girl to do? "Who wants and apple?" I asked. Well, I did for one but my cousins cousins reminded my what we'd been told. "No, Ruth, don't. We'll get in trouble." "Don't worry, we won't get caught", I said as I climbed over the fence and started to climb the tree. Sitting safely on a branch, I prepared to throw some apples down to the others, who were still insisting I get down and go back. I started picking some apples and throwing them down.
I was suddenly interupted by a shout of "What were you told? Get down from there at once!" It was my mother and Aunt who I hadn't noticed approach. I climbed down and we were all told to "Get back inside now!" When we got back to the house, we went through to the lounge while my mother and Aunt stayed in the kitchen talking.
"You're in trouble now" said Sally, as if I didn't know. We heard a cupboard door close in the kitchen and both Sally and Amanda suddenly looked worried. "What?", I asked. "I think you're going to get the cane", said Amanda, "Sally says it really hurts ever so much." Sally confirmed that "It stings like mad." I'd never had the cane before but I had an idea that it wasn't something I was meant to enjoy. My Aunt and mother were still talking in the kitchen but, shortly after, came into the room. I saw my Aunt was carrying a cane and the look on Sally and Amanda's faces told me I was really in for it. My Aunt pulled a chair out and my mother said, "Right, young lady, get your jeans and knickers down and bend over the back of that chair. I've asked your Aunt to give you the cane." I didn't want my cousins to see I was decidedly worried at this so I, almost defiantly, walked over to the chair, undid my jeans and pushed them and my knickers down to my knees. Then I bent over the back and grabbed hold of the seat. The back was a little high so I had to be on tip toes.
My Aunt swished the cane through the air a couple of times then laid it across my proffered backside. "I'm going to give you four strokes", she said. I was a bit relieved at that, four didn't sound too bad, but a sharp intake of breath by Sally cast a little doubt on that. I felt the cane being tapped on on my backside then, after a brief pause - Swish!! Crack!! YEEEEEEOOOUCH!!!!! I was totally unprepared for the incredible burning sensation - it felt like I'd been hit with a red hot poker - and I had three more like that to come! Another couple of taps, a brief pause and I clenched my teeth as - Swish!! Crack!! YEEEEEEOOOOOOCH!!!!". I didn't think anything could sting more than that first stroke but the second one proved me wrong. Two more, equally painful, strokes were delivered and I was told to get up. I did the "spanky dance" for a while, almost tripping over my jeans which, by now, were around my ankles. Then I was told to stand facing the wall. I was grateful for that because I don't think I could have beared to pull my knickers and jeans up at that point.
I heard my mother say to my Aunt that she might invest in a cane. "Heaven Forfend", thought I, (actually, I didn't 'cos I din't know words like that then.) "I hope she doesn't". Then I heard my Aunt tell my mother that the cane was the junior version - "They do a senior cane that stings a bit more." I didn't think that was possible but I didn't want to find out anyway.
Luckily, my mother never did invest in a cane but I was warned that, if I misbehaved when I was there, I could be feeling it again. Like I said earlier, "in one ear, out the other"... but they're other stories.