February 10, 2013

This week's column: A tiny little peek

The Snow Boat Incident

Snow days in Tennessee are less frequent than most school children (and me) would like. When we woke up to a whopping inch of snow recently, there was very little hesitation. My husband, daughter, and I started suiting up for the cold and dragging out the essentials: two pairs of snow skis and a child-size kayak. I’ll explain the kayak later.

Now, for anyone with experience in winter sports, an inch of champagne-like snow is just not enough for skiing, but that didn’t stop my husband. While he may not have gained the attention of any Olympic recruiters that day, he didn’t fall and we figured that was respectable enough. After seeing his mild success, I decided it was safe to try out the kayak in a less-appreciated form: the kayak-sled. Since it’s a small boat for children, and the manufacturers heavily doubted that any self-respecting adult would attempt to fit, there isn’t enough room to stretch out your legs. You have to sort of crouch on your knees to fit inside. This already sounds safe, right?

I got situated in the kayak and had my husband pushed me down the barely snow-dusted hill. It was pretty fun, and I didn’t get hurt, so you know Michael couldn’t resist taking his turn. This is where it gets hard for me to tell the story because I keep laughing, which makes it hard to write.

These are the images I was left with after what we’ve taken to calling “The Snow Boat Incident”:
Michael, at 6’1’’ and 215 pounds, crammed into a kayak built for children under age 8 and 60 pounds; me, at 5’5’’ and…considerably less than 215 pounds, trying to hold onto the kayak, which is teetering over the snow-dusted hill, as Michael adjusts himself; my hands and how my fingers slowly lost hold of the kayak as Michael cried “Wait!”; and finally, Michael’s fast, surprise descent down the hill, which unfortunately . . .

Rest assured, faithful fans, that I thought long and hard about where exactly to end this excerpt. I wanted to make sure it was right in the middle of something good and juicy, but not so good and juicy it would frustrate you to not get to finish it. You know, like the cliff hangers at the end of seasons of TV shows. So, if you want to read the rest, pick up a Lebanon Democrat, Smithville Review, or Oak Ridge Observer this week. Or, be really patient and wait until Thursday, and I'll post the rest. If I remember, which is an awfully big "if." 


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