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A memory with my father
“Dad, can we go play out in the snow?” I asked with my cutest puppy dog face. He looked at me totally unaffected by my “cute kid” attempt.
“Why, so you can complain that you’re cold and want to come in after two minutes?” he questioned raising his eyebrows.
“I won’t, I promise!” I exclaimed, Look I’m prepared.” I showed him my many layers of socks, gloves, and clothing. “Please, daddy, please?!” I begged in my baby voice I used whenever I wanted something.
“I don’t want to hear one word from you,” he warned pointing his finger at me. “Give me a couple minutes,” he said.
“OK!” I yelled jumping up. I ran down the stairs and out the door before he could change his mind. I sat down on the small wooden steps that led up to our front door and unzipped my puffy coat. I was roasting! I sighed as a waited impatiently for my dad; taking in the awe inspiring scene in front of me. The clean, white snow covered our large yard like a blanket made of crystals, or perhaps even diamonds. It happened every winter without fail, but the beauty of it never ceased to amaze me.
I waited for what seemed an eternity in my young mind. I went back in the house to call, “DAD!” He appeared so quickly, you would have sworn he could fly. He went outside and grabbed a large green sled and a small, slightly cracked, yellow one.
“I don’t think the hills in our yard are good for sledding,” I said in doubt.
“Well, let’s find out,” my dad grinned, handing me the yellow sled. I picked out the steepest and biggest hill and pushed myself off the top as hard as I could. At first I thought that I had been mistaken and it was going to work, but then the sled started to slow down. Halfway down the hill, the sled tipped over and I landed, SPLAT, right on my face with the sled on top of me. I slowly got up, my cheeks burning with that fiery ice feeling from the snow. I heard my dad laughing and looked up just in time to see him throw a snowball at me. I fell down once again as my dad came down the hill to join me.
I can’t remember how it came up but we remembered that if you trek down the woods in our backyard, right before you hit the streets, you reach a fenced in hill. I’d never seen anyone sledding down there but that just meant we would have the hill all to ourselves. So we started down. I was a little worried about getting back up, I found it difficult to do even in the summer when we would hike, but I was determined not to complain. I can briefly remember my dad joking about how we should just sled in the woods.
“But we’ll hit the trees!” I objected.
“Nah, we’ll just clear out a path; some hard work would be good for you,” he teased. We eventually made it down to the hill. We were down there for hours having a lot of fun. I wondered if the cars passing us also wondered what we were doing down there. We didn’t stop sledding until we had made lines through every inch of the snow. I mentioned to my dad that I felt bad mom had to work and couldn’t have come with us, but dad pointed out hiking through the woods wasn’t her kind of thing. I regret to say going back up through the woods wasn’t as much fun. I did complain when I got snow in my boot.
I’m not sure why I have always cherished this memory. My dad has done a ton of wonderful things with and for me, and taken me too many memorable places. But this was just different somehow. It was something special between us that was unique to us. This was “our” day that no one else had. Whenever we drive down that street, whether it’s in the dead of winter or covered in wild flowers, I can’t help smile remembering that day.