A girl named Arika is having her 16th birthday party.
Her parents got her a two year old, high quality SUV but she has a scarce amount of friends to give rides to with her newfound freedom.
She has a kind heart but a mild mental/physical disability has made her a bit socially clumsy.
She’s enrolled in a private school and getting into the school is typically more difficult than she achieves academically.
However, through business connections, her parents were able to get her into the school.
While everyone at school is generally polite to her, it’s hard for her to find people in the school she really mentally connects with. Her physical disability prevents her from doing so through playing sports.
She wants to feel like a winner and to just be a part of something at the school.
One day, she hears that the school is having a fundraiser, the prizes aren’t important to her but it sounds thrilling for her to win.
Before the fundraiser starts, she contacts her older brother and asks if she can take her seven year old nephew along with her. Her nephew has a ton of energy.
So on the first day of the fundraiser she picks him up in her new car and they start going door to door selling carmel filled candy bars.
While going door to door they walk together on perfect fall days where the leaves are all orange, crunching as they walk.
Her nephew likes kicking through the deep leaves and watching clouds of them fall in front of him after he kicks them high into the air.
People that answer the doors respond well to the girl’s kind demeanor and to her energetic nephew so they are able to sell through an extremely large quantity of the candy bars over the course of the four weeks the fundraiser is going.
Each time she needs to get more boxes of candy bars to sell she goes to the school office during the day.
As a result of this, the Arika develops a close relationship with the secretary that continues after the fundraiser.
The secretary is an older women that takes a liking to Arika’s personality and eventually gives her free piano lessons, a skill that provides her deep enjoyment throughout the rest of her life.
At the beginning of the fundraiser Arika had fantasized in her head about getting cheered on by the whole school for selling the most candy bars. However, in the days leading up to the ceremony began to readjust her expectations as she thought about how most students would probably be at the football game that was happening the same night.
At first it made her sad but after talking to her father she started to think more realistically.
Going to the school for the awards ceremony, it didn’t matter to her how many people were there, or what prize she received as she had realized she already got what she wanted.
She felt like a winner and her nephew got to feel like one with her when they were walking door to door together.