Just Me

Just Me
Look,I'm just sayin'

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Snow memories

 I do not remember the year but I remember the snow. It was the best snow ever ! It was not very deep, to my knees when I was a child. The most amazing thing about this snow was it had a hard crust. You could walk on that crust or use your sled. Any little hill or incline provided a place to slide. It was fantastic,
 As in keeping with the time I had a flexible flyer sled. All the kids had a flexible flyer although the flying saucer had made its' debut. Those saucers were aluminum back then and had two grab handles. I was never a fan of them as you had so little control. I lived very close to a great hill for sledding and that flexible flyer covered many a mile. We would clean and wax those runners, get a running start and just flop down. That year, the year of the hard snow, you only needed to lie down and push off. Down that hill I would go  and at the base make a sharp left hand turn. The turn was just for fun and reduced your speed. Then the walk back to the top and down again. Had many crashes on that hill as well. One sled I had the runners folded under during that sharp left turn as they bit into the crust. I went flying into a thorn bush ! Fortunately I was bundled up and the thorns didn't penetrate.
 When we weren't sliding down that hill we had another venue. There is a dirt road that ran through the woods behind my house. This road was a fire lane and so seldom traveled. It was a gradual grade but when the conditions were right you could slide for quite a distance. That year the sliding was exceptional, almost like a bobsled run. We picked up quite a bit of speed on that road and there was an " S " turn to navigate. We didn't have the high banking required to go through at speed and so would drag our feet to act as a brake. It didn't always work ! The problem really was that dirt lane was lined with trees. Anywhere you left the course you would hit a tree. What a fun time.
 I believe it was also the year we made a rather foolish choice. My brothers and I decided the hood of a 49 Studebaker champion would make a great toboggan. The hood ornament was missing and so left the hood nice and smooth up front. That hood came to a point and was rounded, we thought it would just plow straight ahead down that hill. Now that hood was quite heavy and large. We all pulled it up the hill and all piled on. Let's just say it wasn't our finest moment. Yes, we went down the hill, most of it anyway, but it wasn't a straight ahead thing. It was more like hold on for dear life ! The weight of that hood, combined with ours, on that hard packed ice , at this point, was a recipe for disaster. We survived the attempt but never tried that again. As far as I know that hood still lies at the foot of that hill, a curiosity for someone to discover. Just how did the hood of a 1949 Studebaker Champion get here ?
 That was all many years ago. Now I live in Caroline county Maryland where the land is flat ! There aren't many hills around here of any size. You can find man made elevations from septic systems or building a road, stuff like that but the incline will be short. No long grade to slide on around here. Lots of open land, clear of obstructions, farmers fields, flat as can be ! We don't usually get a significant amount of snowfall here anyway. A storm or two a year that comes and goes quickly. I don't think I could slide down those hills anymore, the ride was a rough one. I do have a sled though. It is not a flexible flyer but in that style. I use it for Christmas decoration but did haul the grandkids around on it one year. Like I said, no hills.
 I'll just sit inside today and look out the window and into my memory. I'll revisit my sledding days and building snow forts. Tried more than once to build an igloo. Came very close one year. Now if I only had the boots we used back then. They are the best. Perhaps some of you will remember them.