Friday, November 5, 2010

Frozen Fun.

Spring break, 1995/96 school year. A junior high year and the first time I had an equally-adventurous friend at the cabin with me.

It was later in the evening on a Canadian cold March night. The snow glistened under the light of the moon and sparkling stars. We were two girls wanting some fresh air and fun. A short walk to the frozen lake should have been easy. We bundled up in our winter gear and tromped out the door promising to be careful and be back soon.

We chatted all the way down the dark path of evergreens. We talked about boys, friends, forever, the future ahead of us and the world. We talked about how we fit into it or how we moulded it around us. We were quite the pair. Nothing stood in our way. We knew no fear.

Arriving at the lake we found the very familiar lake symphony of the season. Despite the cold and the snow and the puffs of breathe that dissipated into the night's air, we stood listening. A lone owl could be heard in the distance. The lake looked like nature's puzzle with snow drifts painted perfectly in place. The trees swayed in the wind, the odd one shaking the night with a crack announcing its surrender while others were heard groaning in protest.

We breathed in the Earth. We stood silently side by side absorbing the moment...until our adventure set in. It was only a short walk down the frozen lake to the road. Neither of us had had our fill yet so we ventured ahead.

The snow was deep and we kept sinking, cleaning out boot after boot of icy snow. Somewhere we decided to head to the snow-covered ice on the lake. It was March and still frozen. The cold temperatures would surely have preserved the thickness.

We heard cracks and laughed them off as we danced along. Two girls together with no fear and an ounce of insanity. A new sound stopped us. The sound of rushing waters. No. It simply wasn't possible. Rushing water amid the silent snow, surely the cold was getting to us and we'd best be heading home.

We could see the destination road except that it was March and, contrary to our foolish thought, March also means the start of the melt. The melting snow became water raging a war over the icy path we were to take home. We were on high alert but maintaining calmness both knowing that panic would do no good at all. Along the lake we continued expecting to pass the waterfall, find a different way up the bank and then continue back to the road.

We soon found ourselves soaked through and through separated from the road only by the water filled ditch. Ambitious as always, we both thought that a giant leep could clear the water and find us on the right side. Turns out our frog genes failed us that night with both of us landing in the snow and water.

We did make it home and after an absolutely-deserved scolding, we curled around the fire with hot mugs laughing about our experience and crafting the stories we would one day tell.

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