Monday, January 24, 2011

Polar opposites

eyes closed shut

I remember the hill I used to sled as a child.

It was behind the grade school I attended, within walking distance of my house.

I remember one of the sleds we used to own, a silver saucer, and wanting to use it instead of the new red plastic toboggan.

I couldn't tell you why.

I don't really remember the act of sledding itself ... other than cold air numbing my face and the sensation of speed. Trudging back up the hill must have been effortless, because I don't have any recollection of it either.

You sled ... you run ... you wait your turn ... you sled again. That's what I remember.
That and laughing about tipping over or turning around or crashing into the kid who had left the top before me.

I certainly don't remember being told how to steer ... or even knowing there was a need to do so.

It wasn't until I had children of my own to maim in polar collisions did the question even enter my radar.

Honestly ... just seconds before I was hurtling myself and my second born down a steep hill.

"OK ... Try to steer to the right after that first turn," my husband said as I was about to let go.

"Don't you just point yourself in a direction clear of trees and traffic and just ... well, Go?"

My husband looks at me with that special look ... that, lets face it, doesn't really make anyone feel very special.

"Really?! Didn't we already cover this?"

It wasn't until after I'd grown up and my own children reached the age of wanting to plummet down hills and ill-advised speeds that I even thought "there might be a wrong way to do this."

And even then ... time has a way of erasing information I don't use regularly.

"Listen ... If you are heading for a tree to the left put your right foot out to turn away from it."

"I suppose I should have known, opposites attract."

1 comment:

Kristen said...

Ahhh, the silver saucer. I still have mine. And it is still the best sled. :)