So you all know the Northeast was hit with a bit of a blizzard a while ago. Just a bit. A little more than two feet of snow, not counting the huge drifts the 45 mph winds threw around. There was shoveling, snow-blowing, terrible driving conditions, empty store shelves — I mean, it was not a lot of fun.
But what was fun?
Zipping down the hill.
Trudging back up to the top.
I started to be all about the resting portion of the whole sledding experience. I’m going to be 44 years old in a couple of months (or 56, depending on who you talk to and what kind of a mood I’m in), and I recently caught a humdinger of a cold. After a few of those trips back up the slippery slope I was seriously starting to feel like a tired old man.
Who am I kidding? I was a tired old man!
I began rolling off the sled at the end of each run to lay flat on my back in the snow and take a bit of a break. The breaks got longer and longer. Handsome sledding away while I lay there looking at the sky, feeling the cold penetrating through to my backside and the back of my neck.
One time I looked toward the hill, expecting to see Handsome either hurtling down the slope toward me or waiting in line for his turn to do so. I thought I would at least see the back of him as he climbed back up, orange plastic sled trailing along behind him, but I didn’t see him anywhere.
I sat up, looking about, and quickly spotted a flash of orange off to my left. I saw his sled nestled upside-down in the snow, but I didn’t see…
A gloved hand came up on the far side of the sled, rising up from the very ground, cupped palm filled with loose snow. As I watched the wrist flicked, flipping the snow over to land on the turtle’s back of the upturned sled. Curious, I walked over.
Handsome had wormed himself into a body-shaped impression in the snow and pulled his sled over on top of him. He had one hand thrust out into the sunlight and was slowly trying to cover the sled with whatever snow he could reach. I watched for a moment as my son tried to bury himself in the snow like it was a summer day at the beach, then shook my head, incredulous.
“Are you serious?”
The hand stopped moving, and from beneath the plastic shell his voice sounded strangely hollow.
“You can’t do that.”
I shook my head.
“No. No way. We don’t have time for you to do all that blind, with just one hand. Why didn’t you ask for help?”
I knelt in the snow beside him and started scooping loose snow over him with both hands.
Snowballs, crusty chunks, loose snow, I piled it all on and around him. Soon handsome had been reduced to nothing but a low mound in the snow, the tips of both boots protruding slightly, dark against the blinding landscape.
“Hang on, I’ll be right back,” I said.
“Okay,” came the voice from the mound.
The looks on people’s faces as I walked away from my buried son and climbed into the Jeep was priceless. How were they to know I was just getting in to get my phone so I could make some kind of pictorial record of our new game? How were they to know I’m a Horror writer?
I love playing “Shallow Winter Grave”!
Talk to you later!
P.S. -For those of you currently wearing a concerned expression:
The boy was fine. I'm not a complete idiot. He wasn't under so much snow that he couldn't get out, and what with the sled being on top of him I could leave him a window to see out of. Or even wave for help if he needed it.
...and I did love taking this creepy close-up of his staring eye.
Talk to you later!