Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Adventures in sledding

Well, first off, one of my younger friends who is considering where to go back to college mentioned going into equine studies.  I made the mistake of looking at equine programs at colleges across the country and saw that you can actually get a BS in English riding.  Sigh.  I know what I would do if I could do it all over again.  Go to school to major in English riding and minor in math or physics.  Yep. That would be awesome.

My daughter didn't have school today so I did not go in to work as planned.  It probably would've been fine because the highways were all clear, but it would've been too much of a stretch to find all day babysitting for her and I didn't know if the roads would get bad later and I don't like driving with her in the snow if I don't have to.  As it is I took my neighbor, Preetha to the grocery store because I have all-wheel drive, and it was dumping snow so much that there were a couple inches when we came home.  I probably could've gone to the stable for training like I wanted, but a couple different trucks were tailgating me and being aggressive because I was going the speed limit in one spot and 5 miles under in another spot (because I was driving on three inches of snow!!!) and it just didn't seem worth it.

So, I stayed home and attempted to be productive (and was not).  In the afternoon there was enough snow on the hill outside our house to go sledding again.  It had been worn down to just ice but with the new snow today it was good to go again.  So, I went out to oversee my daughter and Preetha's daughter.  I kept asking the other grown-ups to come sledding with me because I did not want to be the only one and they all had some excuse or another (mostly that their yoga pants would get too wet and they'd be too cold ... but I told them if they stay ON the sled their pants won't get wet ...).  Anyway, Preetha said she'd go with me but she had never been on a sled in her life so she had to literally go on the sled with me.  It makes sense.  I don't think it snows much where she grew up in India.  But it is weird to think about because I remember plenty of times sledding as a kid.

We went up to the top of our hill and I sat down on the sled and Preetha paused and said, "Oh, this looks steep," which is funny because I knew what she was talking about.  It is a fairly steep hill but we don't think about it walking up and down it every day, but it looked steeper as she was about to sit on a sled for the first time.  Honestly, it is really a trail-by-fire type of hill to sled on for the first time because it is pretty steep.  But it's only a block long and you plow right into the grass in the front yard at the house at the bottom - their car wasn't even close enough by to run into.  And there are no cars parked on the street on the hill so there isn't anything to run into except the curb (which I did a couple times ... and I ran into our recycling can). 

So, Preetha sat down behind me and put her legs on my legs so they wouldn't drag and slow us down.  I said I would stop if she wanted me to but I guess what I meant was "I'll stop if we're even in the slightest amount of danger".  Because we took off and halfway down she started to yell, "Stop! Stop! We must stop!" and I said, "Hold on! You're fine. You're ok.  Just hold on!" We got to the bottom of the hill and I said "I didn't want to stop because I knew we weren't in danger and I was afraid if we stopped before the bottom it would make you more scared the next time," to which she said, "That's ok! Let's do it again!"

We decided to go down again and this time were were going to race our daughter's on another sled.  But we hit an icy patch halfway down the hill and I said, "Hold on, we're going to spin," and Preetha yelled, "Oh no! We must stop! Oh no!" and I said, "No, we're fine.  Just hang on!" We spun around and were careening down the hill backwards and next thing we know we went backwards over the snow jump the kids made, landed with a thud, skidded out down the street and stopped when we hit the curb a few doors down from where we usually land at the bottom of the hill.  Preetha was both horrified and laughing at the same time and just laid down on the curb for a minute and said, "Oh my.  That was not what I expected."  Meanwhile, I was laughing my head off, which then sent her into laughing her head off.  It was so fun!

All the while the pitbull was bouncing around in the snow (literally bouncing) and she got very worried about me and Preetha when we were careening down the hill laughing and screaming.  She kept trying to comfort Preetha by licking her face when we finally stopped.  Then she took off and ran up the hill to run next to the kids every time they slid down.  Especially the girls - she was very concerned about the girls.  And if they crashed, she would run up to them and loom over them while they were lying in the snow and try to lick their faces and make sure they were ok.

A bunch of the kids in the neighborhood came over for hot chocolate, then when they went home my next door neighbor dropped off her two little 3 month old Shitzu/Maltese puppies for my daughter and her friend to play with.  It was all in all an excellent snow day!

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