… Nobody’s gonna slow me down, oh-no.”
Except, of course, a little ice.
I found myself humming that 80s tune, “Break my Stride” by Matthew Wilder, on my Sunday stroll today, and decided to make it the title for this blog post.
I made no plans to go to Council Point Park, knowing that the snow would not have melted since yesterday’s trip, so, I planned my usual jaunt down Emmons Boulevard to the tracks. I am still on my house-cleaning-and-organization-kick, and worked from 6:00 a.m. until noon, so when I finally finished up, I figured I deserved a long walk for all my efforts in the house.
Gone was the brutal wind chill, and, in its place, were tolerable temps and the sun even put in an appearance as well. Like Saturday, about one in every ten sidewalks was still snow-covered and slick with ice from the two snowfalls last week, and, that caused me to detour and walk in the street to get around those occasional pain-in-the butt patches.
I continued on my way until I got to the footbridge, where I paused to see if the ice was still frozen solid, as it had been yesterday. I knew that ducks and geese were nearby, as I heard their bellowing, er … quacking and honking, as I neared the borderline of Lincoln Park and Wyandotte.
So, as I crossed the footbridge, I looked left and right as I usually do. One side, was frozen solid, and, on the other side, there was a large group of ducks and geese atop the surface of the frozen Ecorse Creek. In all the times I’ve crossed the footbridge in the Winter, I’ve never come upon such a sight. I watched for the longest time, as the sure-footed ducks waddled along, but the geese were much more timid. Some geese had pecked the ice to make a hole, then plunged their head, way up to the neck, into the icy cold water, while other geese were content to plop down onto the ice. Brrrrrrr! But, though you might think the ducks and geese with their wide, webbed feet would have become acclimated to the icy surface eventually, often their legs were giving out beneath them, and down they went. It was comical to see, yet, the bleeding heart that I am, I felt sorry for them.
How I wished I had a camera with me, as I might never see such a sight again.
The actions of the waterfowl at the Creek, and their trepidation on Mother Nature’s ice rink, really reminded me of myself and my first outing with my new ice skates I got for Christmas one year when I was a very young girl. The skates were bright white boots with a zillion eyelets. They had shiny double blades and came with bright-yellow blade covers. On that first trip, and several thereafter, my father would take me down to Oakville’s ice arena on Saturday afternoons. I was never very athletically inclined, and, as soon as I took the blade covers off, despite those double runners, I’d get anxious, certain that I would topple over and end up in a heap on the ice. Just like the other fathers who accompanied their children to the rink, my father would stand there, in his boots, with outstretched arms and say “C’mon Linda – skate over to me” to which I’d shuffle along a few feet, then stop, until prodded to try again.
I guess my fear was falling forward and knocking out what precious teeth remained in my mouth, essentially already a wide-gapped smile, the result of some permanent teeth coming in stages, and baby teeth already confiscated by The Tooth Fairy for one thin dime. (This was the early 60s mind you.)
Probably, the biggest treat of each Saturday skating session, was slipping the skate guards back on, and, once on solid ground, sipping hot chocolate bought at the concession stand at the back of the arena.
So, my feathered friends … I share your pain.
[Image by Thomas Wolter from Pixabay]