Monday, February 7, 2011

Sledding Mount Kilimanjaro

They loved it~ we are suppose to get more on Wednesday. (Drat!)


I told them about the blizzard of '79.   The snow was so deep, my brothers had us younger ones climbing up to  the garage rooftop and jumping off into the drifts below. 

My kids love to hear stories of our childhood.

Then I told them this one~even Hubby appreciated it~

My dad rarely got a day off, let alone on a weekend.  One Saturday, he planned to take a station wagon load of us sledding. 

Getting us ready and loading us up had to be an ordeal in itself.  But I do remember feeling totally excited that we would  be sledding with indescribably awesome moment!

We arrived at grandaddy of all sledding mountains, Mount Kilimanjaro. 

Actually, Centennial Park, but to a little person it really did look like Mount Kilimanjaro!  It stood there in all of its splendor beckoning us, daring us, taunting us.

After making our way to the top and ready for the glorious events of the day to unfold, my mother pointed out that no one was sledding "over there."

And we all turned to look in the direction she was pointing...

"Over there" was a direction that seemed totally isolated from where everyone else was.  It was like our private mountainside...waiting just for our family. 

Dad shrugged and suggested he'd go first.

What happened next was utterly confusing to a child and something that only a parent could appreciate.

Dad climbed atop that sled...belly down, head first.  We were all  excited and standing in awe as we watched one, tough dude lead the way.  Go Dad!

My older brothers pushed him and off he went.  Literally.

He had a perfect launch and then.... hit some natural bump in the mountain  hill that sent him soaring into the heavens; effortlessly breaking away from the sled. 

All was quiet except for the sound of the empty sled and metal rudders gliding against the icy mountain side hillside which was broken by the sound of a huge plop where Dad landed.  Dead still.

I swear we heard the air come out of him from where we stood on the launching pad back up at the top. 

I think my brothers scrambled down to locate the sled and to see if Dad was still alive. 

And it took forever for him to gather himself and slowly, painfully crawl his way to the top of that hill.  All he said was, "Get in the car.  We are going home." 

We littles were stunned, mouths gaping open in shock while Mom remained quiet.  Into the wagon and home we went. 

Mount Kilimanjaro had beaten us.  Our glorious day, our moment with Dad, over.  Before it had even begun.

As adults and reliving that story, Dad claims he still remembers how he had the wind knocked out of him and thought he busted a rib or two.  Poor Dad!

What we do for our kids :)


  1. I love your stories! Good one! Did your Dad ever take you sledding again?

  2. Jill, he took us, but never EVER participated beyon observing! LOL

  3. I guess it was fun while it lasted, huh?

  4. You are the best story teller! Your music and description go perfectly. Your children are blessed:-)

  5. Oh! So laughing out loud here. Great story! :) I love the pics of kids coming in from the snow. I was raised in Ohio, so I remember how much fun "snow days" were. My poor deprived children will probably never know such things- as an adult, I am not much of a snow person.

  6. This sounds like something that would happen to my husband! I love that your mom didn't say anything......
    I am so done with the snow!

  7. I love to hear childhood stories. The person telling them always seems to light up! 79 the year before I was born. Mom talked of that snow. I think we are going to try and find a hill here or there. The same snow is on its way here as well. HAVE FUN!

  8. stories like that live on forever in families. love your pictures.


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