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Every time I go tobogganing (I think this term paints a gigantic maple leaf on my forehead, haha {check out some Canadianisms here… I found them entertaining}), I get completely wrecked.  Legit.  I can’t remember the last time I went tobogganing where I wasn’t completely destroyed when I was finished.

Oh that isn’t true… I went down the hill at Camp twice in February… once with the dog on my lap, haha… sadly there are no pictures of this.  It was epic, though.  We were ‘breaking the trail,’ so to speak.

At Camp (aka my second home) is where I’ve done most of my life’s tobogganing.  I can think of two very memorable experiences, one of which I was reminded of by these pictures for this week’s Weekly Writing Challenge — Threes… by WordPress.

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Photo Credit (all three pics):  Driveway Sledding by Jessie at Behind The Willows

The first incident I’ll tell you about was in high school (actually, I think they both were…).  This particular winter, it had been cold enough that the lake was frozen solid, and we were therefore able to sled down from the chapel at the top of the hill, and ramp off of the dock platform onto the sheet of ice that was the lake.  Of course, it was covered in a rather deep blanket of fluffy snow, so the landing wasn’t supposed to be jarring.

However — right to the right of the dock platform are these sharp, pointy, very hard rocks.  You see, that day… it was about -40 degrees.  Celsius or Fahrenheit, you ask?  Doesn’t matter.  They’re the same at -40.  So when I sat down on my crazy carpet (… aptly named, no?), I breathed into my scarf, which was protecting my face, and my friend pushed me down the hill.  My breath instantly fogged up my glasses, which at -40 froze instantaneously.  I couldn’t see where I was going at all, and I ended up going backwards.

You can probably see where this is going.  There’s been foreshadowing.  I didn’t ramp off of the dock platform as I was supposed to.  I crashed into the rocks to the right of the dock…. with my tailbone.  It HURT!  I laid on the frozen lake, probably motionless, because from the deck overlooking the lake (which is no longer there), my Dad yelled “if you can move, get UP!!!”  At the time, it seemed pretty mean, but now when I look back as an adult, I know that if it happened to any of my students, I’d be concerned first with whether or not they were paralyzed, and THEN I’d be concerned with how much it hurt.  I sat up, gave a solid two thumbs up, and dragged my very sore body back into the main building.  You know you’re gonna hurt when it hurts instantly.  This was Friday evening of an entire weekend away.  I did not go back outside the rest of the weekend.

The second incident was far less scary.  You see, in years where the lake hasn’t been adequately frozen for it to be safe to toboggan onto, we toboggan from the driveway.  In Grade 12, I had some crazy long hair (well, about as long as it is now, haha… just fewer gray ones…).  I had it braided into pig tails to go tobogganing so that it would fit under my tuque.  I was there with a bunch of friends from my youth group, and all of us decided to try this brilliant plan.  Let me tell you, nothing good ever comes from “hey, I got an idea!” when it’s coming from a few 16 year old guys.

We piled onto the inner tube of a transport truck.  Four guys on the bottom.  Four girls in row two (I was one of them), four more girls on top of us (they were probably grade 6-8), and four little kids on the top row.  It took three grown men to push us to give us enough momentum to get started down the hill.  I was on the outside of my row.  Well…. remember those crazy long pig tails I told you about?  One of them went under the inner tube while we were going down the hill, and literally pulled me out of the pile of people… three rows down, sandwiched on the boys, and under literal piles of girls, I got yanked out by a pig tail.  Everyone else got to the bottom and wanted to know why I bailed.  With tears in my eyes, I told them that probably a bun would have been a better option.

Long story short:  I prefer to play it safe when it comes to tobogganing.  Golf courses, previously unbroken trails, etc… those are safe.  Those kids in Jessie’s pictures look like they had a wonderful time tobogganing down their driveway, but I don’t toboggan down the driveway any more.

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