Why not create the Spring Olympics?

The snow is retreating. I can almost hear winter giving up the fight, raising her hand like she’s leading the cavalry.
The snowstorms grind to a halt and cower behind her—still hopeful they will be given the signal to jump out and smite the unsuspecting.
‘Just following orders,” snowstorms seem to say with a shrug and a look of innocence, taking no responsibility.
Snowstorms are like mercenaries; they’re just hired thugs, cleverly-disguised to throw us off, to have us investing in toboggans and skis and snowmobiles.
Older people retreat south to the warmer climes because they’ve wised up.
Through the retreating snow, I saw crocuses the other day—a colourful little flag sent through winter’s barren landscape.
Crocuses are my favourite sign of hope. Then there’s the robin and those little bare patches of earth where spring has won the tussle.
In the middle of just such an oasis was a little girl drawing lines in the dirt, and I heard her say one of my favourite words: hopscotch.
Sherry Doucette and I played hopscotch, a lot of hopscotch, when we weren’t galloping around the playground as two-legged human horses.
I think my mother feared I eventually would drop down permanently and move through life on all fours and whinny instead of talk. It was needless worry because I have straightened up.
The condition was genetic, though, because one of my daughters spent the majority of her childhood galloping through the house and over the steeplechase course she created in every room.
The broom stretched between the couch and piano bench. Laundry baskets were inverted and kitchen chairs turned on their sides. It was a bit of a challenge to manoeuvre through any room Samantha had retrofitted.
Tripping and shin-bashing just became the norm, the unavoidable. I never went to that extreme; perhaps a milder dose. But right next on the list of favourite things to do was hopscotch.
I think hopscotch should be an Olympic sport. We could create the Spring Olympics, just to change things up a bit. Robins could participate: best bouncing-across-the-lawn or best timing of returning from the south.
But hopscotch would be the marquee event. I do fear the game would be spoiled because we would be inclined to spend far too much time studying the affects of wind resistance and we’d then be obligated to wear spandex.
Instead of a perfect stone found in the ditch or at the edge of a gravel road, there would be manufactured ones with polished surfaces and perhaps some design that would have the stone drop at the optimum rate, depending on which square you were aiming at.
Contestants would have a bag of stones and shoes to use depending on the conditions.
We have to muck with things, never using the words “good enough.” What was so wrong with running the marathon in bare feet?
So, we’d have to be specific about the equipment rules.
Marbles. That could be another event. I could dig out my marble bag because, of course, there would be no age limit. I’d find my pure-ees and pee-wees and cat’s eyes and steelees.
The pee-wees were my favourite. I never risked them foolishly.
The Olympic committee would draw a simple line in the sand with a small hole about 15 feet away. Those kids with the early growth spurt thought they had the advantage with arms that seemed to go on forever, but I think it threw their co-ordination off and they were lulled in to a false sense of confidence.
We short people who never seemed to grow had the advantage of knowing just how our limbs worked.
Other sports? How about making rivers of the melting snow, and seeing how far you can wander into said water before it pours in to your boots?
Tadpole spotting? Another gem. There would be no end of events, all without any threat of concussion.
I suppose dodge-ball could get out of hand. Perhaps we’ll re-think that one.
wendistewart@live.ca

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail
Posted in Uncategorized