04/28/2014 04:31 pm ET Updated Jun 28, 2014

Miracle, Schmiracle

It's hard for someone who's worked in newspapers and TV as long as I have to feel any sense of wonder over miracles, because we peddle miracles faster than McDonald's slings Big Macs.

As a prefix in the media, the word "miracle" is Type-O universal: Miracle weight loss! Miracle rescue! Miracle reunion!

So as Popes John XXIII and John Paul II get the nod for sainthood thanks to miracles associated with their lives, I'd like to share the one true miracle of my lifetime, which happened back in the late sixties.

No, not the New York Mets of '69. Good guess, though.

This happened a few years earlier, around Easter time at a cow and chicken farm in Pennsylvania Dutch country.

My dad thought it was important for kids from New York City to know where eggs and milk came from, so he took us all on a farm vacation.

This particular farm was run by a sweet old man and his stern, bible-thumping wife. The old man tended to the cows and the chickens while his wife cooked meals and disapproved of her sinful guests.

"We pray first!" she snapped at one of them when he tried to take a sip of his morning orange juice.

It was actually pretty cool for my sisters and me. We spent the days gathering eggs and feeding the cows while my father took pictures of us in action.

Meanwhile, my mother read books by the heat of the pot-bellied stove in the farmhouse, and wondered where normal people went on their vacations.

We were all up before dawn because the three-story henhouse had about a thousand chickens, and every morning at five the lights went on in there to simulate sunrise and accelerate the egg-laying process.

Nobody sleeps through the clucking of a thousand hens.

My miracle happened in the henhouse. I was on the top floor, gathering eggs, and I guess I forgot which floor I was on when I decided to go outside for a breath of much-needed fresh air.

Each floor had an identical wooden door - don't ask me why a henhouse would have doors on their upper floors - and I was puzzled by the fact that I had to unlock the slide-bolt on that particular door until I got it opened and stepped out into the sky.

No kidding - I was at least twenty-five or thirty feet above the ground, which was rapidly approaching as I went into free-fall.

Funny what flashes through your head at a time like that - here I was, eleven or twelve years old, about to die, and what was I thinking?

I had never kissed a girl! And just as importantly, a girl had never kissed me!

I hit the ground hard, feet-first, rolled down a hill, came to a halt and took a few deep breaths.

"I'm alive," I murmured. I was in shock, but I was all right. Slowly, I stood up. The soles of my feet stung a little bit, but that was the worst of it.

I limped to the farmhouse and told my mother what had happened. She checked me over for broken bones and couldn't find any. The farmer's wife, sensing a lawsuit, put down her bible and spread her hands.

"It's a miracle!" she proclaimed, and nobody dared to contradict her.

So that's my miracle. Go ahead and scoff!

If only I'd taken such a fall in modern times, I'd have real proof. Somebody would have filmed it on their cellphone, and it would have gone viral on Youtube, and I would have been the "kicker" on every morning show in America:

"And finally this - a thirty-foot fall from a henhouse, but miraculously, this boy is all right! Talk about knowing egg-zactly how to land!"

Charlie Carillo is a novelist and a producer for the TV show "Inside Edition."