Saturday, December 23, 2017

A Tingle of Excitement

As I stood to wait for the bus this morning, slowly getting covered with the fresh snow that was falling, I was taken back to younger years.  Memories filling me with a familiar excitement that  I would get seeing the snow at this time of year.

 I'm not sure why that is, maybe all those years hearing Bing Crosby sing White Christmas maybe? Maybe the memories of tobogganing down the old Band Stand hills? All I know for sure is that when I see that snow falling a few days before Christmas, it gives me a special feeling.

For those wondering what the Band Stand hills are, it is a local "place of interest" located in my hometown. It has a large flat area, and then the land drops off into terraced hills. Each summer when I was much younger, we would grab a blanket and go to the Bands Stand, where the local fire department band would play their renditions of old songs they had been playing for years, and yet still hadn't got them quite right! Had to give then an "A" for effort though!

It was still a fun time, and many of the locals in town would usually show up. It was a chance to place your blanket on the grass close to that cute girl from school, not too close to make it obvious that you liked her, but close enough to let her know you were there, and if you were lucky, she'd move a little closer to you and start a chat with you.

This is the "new" Band Stand.You can see people sitting on the hills, the gazebo is actually located at the bottom of the hills, now. Before, the bandstand was originally at the top of the hills. To the right of the gazebo is the War Memorials, and to the very far right you can just make out St. Andrews Presbyterian Church, which as a young and foolish child, I spent many wasted Sundays.

In the winter time sliding down those hills was much like playing Russian Roulette. If the snow was a bit crispy and hard, you'd start at the top, basically be airborne and not touch the second, land on the third, and hope like hell that the snow piled up from the snowplows plowing, that you'd stop before you ended up on the street at the bottom.

Do you know that in all my years I don't remember a single kid getting hit by a car at the bottom of those hills! I had a few friends who had to "jump ship" because they knew they weren't going to stop and there was a car coming round the corner, but never did one of them ever get hit!

I preferred those old aluminum toboggans compared to the wooden ones, they were faster and lighter, which was great for the return trip, they weren't too hard to haul back up the hill to start over!

Finally, I saw my bus coming from a few blocks down the street, and as it neared, I couldn't help but feel that old tingle of excitement as the snow silently fell, and the memories filling me with the nostalgia of those younger years.

One of MY favorite Christmas songs just for all of you! 

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