Ah, but to be there atop Chestnut Ridge, with life’s volume turned low, its pace slowed, the world minimized to the pleasure and task of blending sport with gravity . . .
So simple, yet tremendous, as simple so often is.
The encompassing, intoxicating noise on the hill, beyond Screaming Nancy, was the sound of sled after sled skimming down the course and the delirious cacophony of sledders’ voices. Kids laughed and hollered and screamed, whether their runs were Olympic-worthy or spectacular wipeouts. Most of the parents just watched, but a few risked limb, ego, and pride, casting off their decades of rusted steel runners and memories of pruned and frozen fingers and toes.
The flakes continued to fall as we left the hill, the sound of the kids’ divine chaos fading in the distance as we hauled our sleds to the parking lot. I was left to meditate on how their lives eventually will become deferred “to do’’ lists, too cluttered for a hill, a fireplace, and a sense of simple peace on a snowy winter’s day.