Saturday, December 01, 2007

Winter Wunderland

1 December 2007

It was the first day of December today, so naturally, we got half a foot of snow.

Snow is cold, sure, but when it first falls, it's rather lovely and invigorating. It's clean and white and pure and new . . . it's only afterward, as it piles up and freezes and turns grey or brown that it becomes an ugly, unpleasant thing.

That's my opinion, of course, I'm sure you adore brown snow.

My sister's kid was coming over (we were gonna see ENCHANTED, but she didn't mention that she saw it last week), and I got the bright idea of going outside and building a snowman with her. She's six years old and I got a coat on her and some gloves and we went to work making a snowman. The snow was fresh, having just fallen during the night and morning before I woke up, so it was easy to pack and I'd basically make a ball, then have her roll it around until it was too big for her to push, and I'd take over.

We did that twice and were just starting on the snowball that would be the head when she started complaining about the cold. I told her it wasn't so bad and that we were almost done, and went as fast as I could. We stuck the head on and she wanted to go inside. I told her we weren't done, that all we had to do was get some rocks and branches and make arms and a face. She didn't seem to want to, but I gathered up the rocks, broke two branches off the tree, and made her stick them on.

"Now can we go in?" she asked, nearly in tears now. I told her we needed to take a couple of pictures to show her mother (and my mother too, I guess), so I went in and got my camera. When I came out again, my niece was full on crying. She was cold and it wasn't fun anymore.

"Smile, damn you!" I basically shouted and took a couple of pictures. Then we went inside and she just started bawling. I guess it's been too long since I was a kid or I'm genuinely a bad guy, 'cause I didn't get why she was making such a fuss. Turns out her hands were so frozen she couldn't get her shoes untied and her pantlegs were soaked through from the wet snow. I helped her get her shoes off . . . and she wasn't wearing any socks underneath. I had just assumed when I told her to get her shoes on, she would've gotten socks on too, and I'd think she would've . . .

Ah well.

Anyhow, I filled a big mixing bowl with hot water and put it down for her to stick her feet in it, and instead of warming her up, she began shrieking, then giving out state secrets and enemy troop encampment locations.

I don't know if this Stupid Thing is truly deserved, because I didn't mean to torture my sister's kid, but I certainly felt stupid typing it up.

Rish "Luckily Childless" Outfield

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