Growing up in a small town in Southern New Jersey

Sunday, November 16, 2008

It snowed!

I woke up this morning and what to my wondering eyes should appear -- my faded vision that is -- but snow. Not a lot of it, mind you, but enough to say, "It snowed!" I would say we had what the prognosticators call a dusting, but to me it was snow. I knew it had snowed before the light of day because it was so very, very quiet throughout the early hours of the morning. At 3 a.m. there wasn't even the sound of an auto on Route 27. It was what writers like to call as "eerily quiet."

I love snow. I hate ice, but I love snow. I don't mind what it does to the roads, because I no longer HAVE TO drive any where.

My first remembrance of snow was when my father put me on THE SLED (this was an old wooden sled with the cross bar in the front for steering the two steel rudders) and hauled me down to the Post Office to get the mail. I was bundled up like you see those kids on TV with 16 layers and couldn't move if I wanted to. He put me on THE SLED and then he walked down the middle of Second Avenue to The Pike talking to me the whole time, about what, I don't remember. The he went over to the PO to pick up the day's mail and dragged me back home.. What fun that was for me! No roly-poly plastic thing that is now called a sled for us -- I don't even think plastic has been invented back then. Well, maybe it had, but I can't recall anything that came in a plastic bottle or jar. Shower curtains were made of material -- if a household even had a shower -- and the interior and exterior of appliances were made of metal or glass.

THE SLED also provided me, personally, with many hours of play. While I can only remember one snow storm when I was a child where the snow was so deep in which I had to trudge through snow up to my waist to get to school -- all uphill of course, we often had snow enough for sledding. And there were many hills -- small hills which we called "banks" and I would find my favorite "bank" and slide down there over and over until I wore myself out, then I'd head home. It seems to me that I was only allowed to sled in the afternoon. Whether that was because I had school in the morning and early afternoon, or whether it was a "house rule" I can't recall, but I do not remember ever sledding in the morning. Isn't that odd?

So, it snowed last night. Our first snow of this winter season and it isn't winter yet. I wonder if that forebodes a treacherous, blustery winter for this area. This section of the country really hasn't had a bad winter since 1977. We're about due, aren't we? Oh, yeah, and I won't be sledding this year. My sledding days are over. Now, it's time to watch others enjoy the sport.


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