Sunday, December 27, 2009

Leaving It to Scott Hamilton

Top of the World

Here it is, Sunday, December 27, latitude 46 degrees and some odd seconds North, and it's raining. I realize that's a mere five degrees south of London and it's probably raining there, too, though Londoners are used to it in the winter. No doubt it's been that way since the days of the Roman Conquest when London was founded (43 A.D., and called Londinium, in case you're curious). I'll wager the Romans wished they'd brought their rubber Wellingtons along. Except for the fact that rubber wasn't invented until 1852. Sometimes you just can't win.

Anyway, we expect snow in Maine. Sure, we complain about it come spring, but when you've endured six months of white, a little green is a welcome thing, even if you're colorblind like me and green looks red. But the rest of the time, we're strapping on snowshoes and skis, climbing onto snowmobiles, starting up the snow blower, and thoroughly enjoying the absence of billions and billions (thank you, Carl Sagan) of tourists. Winter in Maine is pretty cool, no pun intended.

Admittedly, the rain is only today's forecast and tomorrow is supposed to get us back on course, but that also means our misplaced April showers are going to turn into a sheet of ice overnight. I can hear some wag now, "Since you ski and snowshoe, why not put on the ice skates?" I tried skating once, the kind with rollers, and I spent more time on my seat than on my feet. Maybe if they made ice skates with the equivalent of training wheels I'd be okay. Until then, I'm leaving it to Scott Hamilton.

Which brings me to the one regret I have about Christmas. While window shopping at Eastern Mountain Sports, I came across these great ice creepers. Strap them on your shoes and you've got a set of metal teeth between you and Jack Frost's latest efforts at creative self-expression. Resisting the temptation to buy for myself, I thought about them as a possible after-the-holiday treat. Tomorrow morning, when contemplating taking the dog out, I'm going to wish I'd done otherwise. Then again, maybe I should have simply asked Santa for a pair of skates and given Scott a run for his money.

(Creative Commons Image of figure skater by Lou Musacchio via Flickr)
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