Memory Monday-It’s a thing…
In the summer of 1984, I was spending some time with my favorite aunt and cousins from my Dad’s side of the family. Aunt Vicki took Olivia, Christopher, and I to see a movie. We went to see The NeverEnding Story. It was awesome! In case you’ve never watched the movie, I’ll tell you now the rest of this post contains spoilers. You’re welcome.
That movie has long been one of my favorite, go to, will watch it again and again movies. I own my own copy to watch when and if I please. It never grows old for me. It has books, imagination, an awesome luck dragon, trolls, danger, and so much more. As a child with a wild imagination there couldn’t have been a more perfect movie.
The movie has one very sad scene. Atreyu has a beautiful white horse for a best friend. He and Artax start the journey together and nothing could be more precious than a boy on a quest with a white horse. Then the duo encounter The Swamp of Sorrows. As they cross The Swamp of Sorrows, they have to keep their spirits high or they will be pulled into the gross, yucky depths of the swamp. Things go alright for a little while, but then Artax has a few issues. Then poor Artax stops walking and sinks. Atreyu pulls on the reins and tries his best to keep his buddy from sinking into a murky death. The horse sinks up to about his neck, the screen fades to black, and comes back to Atreyu sitting on the edge of the swamp crying.
Now, if you’ve followed my Memory Monday stories, you may know my family (Mom’s side) are firm believers in tough love. If we had a family motto it would be something like: Life’s Not Fair, Suck It Up. As a child and well into adulthood, I didn’t cry during movies. Afterall, they were just movies. So I’m sitting there thinking about how much it will suck for Atreyu to have to walk everywhere now. I was probably still munching on my popcorn too. Then out of nowhere, Olivia reaches over and pokes me in the eye.
“Ouch! What’d you do that for?” I whisper to her.
“I wanted to see if you were crying and it’s dark in here.”
I wasn’t crying until she poked me in the eye!
I will say that as I’ve watched this movie as an adult, I’ve often wondered how the heck Atreyu made it out of the swamp. Surely if he watched his best friend and beloved horse sink and die, wouldn’t he also feel some sadness. In The Swamp of Sorrows, sadness and giving up are what kills you so just how did he make it out? Maybe he didn’t like that horse so much after all?