To Know Me Is To Know My Family: Skating on the pond without Ice Skates (30)

It was winter in Olympia, and this year it had been snowing quite frequently. Alanna, Janice and Henry, my siblings, hadn’t been able to spend much time outside due to the cold and damp weather. This particular day one of their favorite Uncle’s Teddy came over to their farm. Teddy was the youngest brother of my Dad’s family and always had a playful personality. The sibs adored him and was always happy when he came to visit.  Anxious to get outdoors they finally convinced Teddy to take them for a walk into the woods that lined the farms backyards. My siblings were instructed to never go into the forest on their own for fear of them getting lost, hurt or perhaps becoming dinner for one of the many cougars that roamed the area. Mom was always very disturbed when she would hear the low growl of the wild cats at night. It must have been one of the happiest days in her life when they finally got their indoor bathroom in the house.  

Getting the sibs ready, Teddy got their coats on and dressed them as warm as possible for this kind of weather. They were off to go on an adventure, not knowing where it would lead them. Now, Teddy had a lively imagination and was a world full of knowledge. He would talk to the trees, pretend that they talked back. When they would see and hear animals, Teddy would tell them all about the different critters, becoming quite animated. After about walking about half a mile, they came upon a pond. It had frozen over and the fun was about to begin. We did not have luxuries’ like ice skates. Not even a single pair to share. But what they did have was their imagination and adventurous spirit. Before you know it, they where sliding on the ice across the pond one by one as if they really had ice skates on their little feet. They were having such fun, giggling when one would occasionally fall or did some kind of twirl that just seemed like they had such talent. Teddy all the while kept a close eye on them and was always close by. Suddenly the fun stopped as the ice cracked in a place on the pond where it was thin and all to quickly Henry had fallen through the ice and into the freezing water. Teddy rushed to Henry’s aid and pulled him from the frigid water. Teddy then gathered Alanna and Janice. As quickly as he could he returned them back to the farm. There he preceded to remove Henry from his wet clothes and warmed him as well as the other children with blankets and putting them in a safe distance to the heater. The children asked that Teddy keep it a secret as to what had happened that day.

Henry and Janice would develop pneumonia and had to be hospitalized. They recovered nicely and went on to play another day. As for their Uncle Teddy, he was a hero that day. He continued his heroism as he became a Fireman in the state of Washington.

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