Posted tagged ‘wooden sleds’

“Feel the rhythm! Feel the rhyme! Get on up, its bobsled time!”

March 11, 2017

The snow is deeper on the lawns and gardens. The streets and walkways got wet before they got snowy. I took Gracie out front this morning because the back steps were covered above my shoes. My feet got wet anyway.

It is the brightest of days. The sun shines off the snow. The air is so clear even the smallest pine branch is having its day, its place in the sun with a blue backdrop, deep and cloudless. If it weren’t so cold, this would be the perfect day. It is currently 19˚with an occasional wind strong enough to sway the top branches. I have to go out later, but I’ll bundle up and I’ll put Gracie in her coat.

I figure kids are sledding at the golf course. It is one of the few places around with a good hill that’s safe from cars. I’ve stopped to watch a couple of times. The kids were using all sorts of sleds. I saw the traditional wooden ones like I used to have, but the plastic sleds far outnumbered the wooded. The circle sleds, the ones we called saucers, are still circles but are now plastic. Plastic sleds resembling toboggans had multi-riders, mostly smaller kids. Inflated inner tubes give a great ride but a wild ride with little control.

I loved sledding especially on the hill my house faced. Every kid in the neighborhood would be out either sledding or walking back up that hill. I always think sledding is as close as we can get to flying while staying on the ground.

The clock goes one hour forward tonight. I never understood daylight savings time when I was a kid, and I’m still a bit confused. Everything I’ve read says the energy savings are only negligible, and some have even found that costs are higher, since people in hot climates are more apt to use air conditioners in the daytime. The original reason was WWI and conserving electricity for the war effort. Daylight savings was repealed after the war but reinstated during WWII. After that war, it was never repealed. Some states honored the hour; other states didn’t so in 1966 Congress passed the Uniform Time Act, which standardized daylight saving across the country except in Arizona and Hawaii which didn’t choose to honor it. After all the reading I did, I’m still confused as to why. Tradition? Habit? Laziness to change the status quo? Nobody cares?

“About the woodlands I will go / To see the cherry hung with snow.”

January 5, 2014

I have rejoined the world. My car is on the street should I choose to travel anywhere. The steps are shoveled as is the walkway. A path leads to the bird feeders so I can keep them filled with seed. Gracie hadn’t ventured further than the bottom of the steps where I had my little adventure the other day, but today she is roaming under the deck for a bit more privacy. Gracie is the mistress of all she surveys as she sits on the deck to keep an eye on the neighborhood. She has been outside most of the morning.

It is warmer than it has been. Icicles are hanging from my roof and getting longer from the drips. One is nearly to the ground. I put paw friendly de-icer on the front steps as they were slippery when I went to get the papers. With my history, a fall would have been inevitable, but I have saved myself from injury and indignity.

Fold laundry and vacuum pine needles are the only jobs on my to-do list. The day is a gray one and not at all inviting. Because I have no need to be out, I’ll shower and put on cozy clothes again.

If I were a kid again, I’d be out sledding. Around here the golf course is the big sledding spot, but where I grew up had plenty of choices. I did go to the Winchester Golf Club once when I was in high school. I was with my friends Bobby and Jimmy. We had a toboggan with wings. On the way down, we flew off the hills a couple of times and landed hard but never fell off. Jimmy, sitting on the end, almost did but I, in the middle, grabbed him. It was a spectacular run and we lugged the toboggan up the hill to take more flights. We were the only ones who dared to ride that hill.

We had wooden sleds with metal runners. A rope was tied to the steering bar in the front so we could pull the sled up the hill. I remember that rope froze after only a couple of runs. We always rode down the hill on our stomachs. We’d hold the sled, run as fast as we could then jump on once we were at the start of the hill. We’d put our feet in the air so they wouldn’t stop us until we needed them as brakes. The steering was always iffy at best. It was a quick ride then a longer walk back up the hill. We’d sled all afternoon until we couldn’t feel our feet or hands. When it was time to go in, I’d jam my sled in the snow in the backyard, walk down the stairs to the cellar and take off all the wet clothes. Every so often my mother would make us cocoa, “…to warm the innards,” as she sometimes said, but more often I’d get into bed to read and get warm under the covers.

Getting a new sled for Christmas was always one of the great gifts.