Posted by: Shanie Matthews | March 5, 2010

Winter’s Wonderland

Standing on the edge of forever, a blustery gust of wind whipped against my cold face. The fresh, clean air was biting to the bone, despite my thick long johns. Glistening snow particles twinkled as they danced with the breezes, floating when the air didn’t feel like playing. Sparkling with the glow of a million diamonds, the land was dazzling with its brilliance of shimmering white. I scooped up some small snow crystals; looking at them sideways, I saw miniature beams of red, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple shooting out in all directions.

In the distance, a light grey down of clouds blanketed the indigo blue lake. Wispy layers of mist floated into the distance as the sun burnt off the night’s blanket of warmth. The rugged mountains surrounding the lake jumped out of the water in a great wall of protection. High in the azure sky a Sun Dog glimmered with the spectrum of the rainbow.

Small groups of snow finches danced among the weathered Snowbrush. They chirped happily, singing a song known by the entire chorus of feathered friends. The edges of my skis and the tips of my poles creaked in unison with the finch choir. Groaning, the winds blew through the massive Sugar Pine trees as they sung along. Their voices sounding like a deep baritone-singing group.

Sticking my tongue out, the cold crystals flying in the air reminded me of vanilla ice cream. I tried to lick up the fresh, clean tasting fragments of snow but within seconds my tongue felt like a Popsicle. My breath escaped me looking like puffs of white smoke. As though I was a winter dragon, I let out a large fiery sigh of air. I felt the edges of the breath enter my jacket and warm my neck. Breathing in deeply, I smelt the pungent perfume of the trees, reminding me of the pine cardboard tree hanging in our car. The stench of the chairlift lingered heavily in the air, smelling like a semi truck with an oil leak.

I tugged at my worn, purple leather gloves and grasped my poles firmly. My orange Lange ski boots were buckled down tightly and the slight feeling of a cramp was awakening on my left foot. I adjusted my goggles until they were laying flat on my face and there were no uncomfortable kinks in the strap. A feeling of flighty butterflies came into my belly and the morning breakfast of scrambled eggs teased at the back of my throat. The excitement of the steep ski run was making me giddy with anticipation.

I ran my skis back and forth in a fast seesaw motion. Squeaking against the snow, my skis cried out a waking call to my muscles. They grumbled and complained but came to life when I pushed off towards my first descent of the day.

And with the first arc I knew it was going to be another grand, happy heart experience in winter’s wonderland.

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