Saturday, January 26, 2013

Going Skating on the Creek

I don't remember how old I was when I got my skates for Christmas. I just remember how excited I was. Finally, I had my own pair of white figure skates.

A few years later we moved out to the country where a rambling creek flowed behind our house-and those of my aunts and uncles and cousins and grandparents. While the creek provided lots of playtime all year round-Winter was my favorite season, especially when the creek froze. That's when my cousins and I spent hours outside, and most of that time was skating.

Day and night-whenever we could-we'd be down there. It didn't matter what the temperature was or how hard the wind was blowing or how fast the snowflakes fell.We'd be on the creek-swirling and twirling; playing and pretending. It was fun lying on our stomachs and looking down into the frozen water. Creek grass and gnarly reeds appeared suspended in time. It was like looking into a water globe where nothing can move.

Sometimes we'd pack a sandwich, fill a thermos with hot chocolate and go on an adventure up the creek to see how far we could go. There were places where we'd have to climb over fallen trees or places that weren't frozen; places where the creek flowed freely by. Being kids, those places were like magnets. We'd play around the edges. We'd throw little twigs in the swirling water and follow them for as long as we could. If we ever did get soaking wet, I don't remember. Childhood is immune to the cold. Wet hands and feet are part of play.

Perhaps the best time skating on that creek was at night, especially when the moon was full and the stars numbered in the zillions. Those were the times we'd lay there, and dream and talk and Wonder-for when you are a kid, the world is full of Wonder and creeks are made for skating.  

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