Living in the country there are a number of places to ice skate when the weather turns cold enough to freeze your.....pond, lake, or ROAD! What did you think I was going to say was frozen?! There are several ponds within walking distance, or at least only a short drive from our home. I haven't had the pleasure of lacing up my skates in many years, but the fun we had has stuck with me, bringing smiles and perhaps even the phantom pain of too-cold toes. This holiday season I actually was attempting to turn my retired skates into Christmas decor. Time marches on....
One of my earliest memories of skating was at my uncle's pond, where they knew it was safe to skate because they could drive the truck onto the ice. I have always wondered what happens when they drive the truck onto the ice only to discover it's NOT safe for skating?! As a child this question perplexed me. More recently, I have skated on the local Presbyterian camp's pond with friends who really knew how to throw a skating party. A bonfire at the pond's edge, complete with cocoa, s'mores, and blankets, made it a picturesque and memorable evening.
As a high school student, I spent every Friday night at one of my home town's skating rinks, chasing friends and playing crack the whip. I will never forget the night I fell on my knees on the ice, spearing my rear-end with the blade of my skate. Even the approaching Zamboni wasn't enough to get me to stand and skate off the ice. Memorable for sure, but not a fun night!
My all time favorite day of skating, though, was right here at home. You have seen the picture of my road when it snows. Our winter wonderland. At least it is when it's just snow on the ground. One year we had a series of snow storms leaving a good two feet of packed powder in our yards, walls of shoveled snow 4 feet high, and an accumulation of maybe 6 inches on the road. A few sun-shiny days and the process of melting and re-freezing, followed by rain and more freezing, created nearly smooth ice in both driveways and the road. We spent one glorious afternoon sliding, slipping, skating, and falling from one house to the next. The hillarity of attempting to skate on imperfect ice, surrounded by walls of snow from shoveled drives, was enough to cause me to laugh so hard I cried. I can still picture little Stef from next door attempting to skate on the road, so short that her pink hat would disappear and reappear as she travelled behind undulating piles of shoveled snow. There she is! No she's gone! There she is again! Possibly one of those "you had to be there moments", but for those present, I don't suggest causing small children to laugh so hard they need to use the bathroom.....unless your can undress them in record time removing boots, snowsuits, hats and gloves to get to the potty on time.
That day was unplanned, unpredictable, and unimaginably unique. It is a day I will certainly never forget, and, I'm sure, never be able to repeat or recapture.
Wishing you all unexpected and unique moments of your own this winter.
A warm country hug to all....pass the cocoa!
Congrats to my son for finally figuring out how to follow Mum's blog!