thickening sheets of ice.

being canadian by birth (and somehow still by citizenship), i pretend i share more characteristics with those that have spent greater than nine years in the country. that is, at times i act like i am impervious to cold, understand the use of brooms in curling, pour maple syrup on everything, and domesticated a beaver once.

i don’t wish to refute any of these things though. in fact, i want to propagate still another stereotype, i was born wearing a pair of skates. this is how gestation works in canada: women have reinforced wombs, lined, like ice rinks, with boards displaying corporate logos; amniotic fluid is more of an amniotic, um, solid, slippery as ice, on which fetuses glide; doctors sometimes suffer nasty gashes from dreaded feet-first births; children sever their own damn umbilical cords.

my return to the frozen pond after a multiple-year absence was slightly incongruent with these facts, as i advanced bambi-legged onto the ice. slowly i recovered, holding thumper’s hand and traveling around the rink, often with a stutter-step gait. i kept declining to leave her side and skate with the others, lying that i was worried about her falling, when, in actuality, she, nose pink from the cold, was necessary for keeping me erect. we stopped, our hands resting on the dasher, and took turns spinning. i thought about my injury in grade three when ten stitches were needed to close a gash in my chin after performing a similar routine.

at one point, as if discovering buried treasure, she remarked, it’s all in the butt, and gained speed. i, too, steadily improved, thinking that, while my skills weren’t returning to me like riding a bike, perhaps they were like riding a bike on ice. before the end of the night, i did a few laps on my own, wind gently tousling my hair, and the true north again both strong and free.

aside: i realize that i’ve made reference in the preceding paragraphs to a disney deer. please don’t think his biography, specifically the death of his mother, still vibrant with youth, is lost on me. i will continue fleeing the destruction caused by man throughout my life. also, please note that when i’m invited to speak at a disney convention, i don’t want any questions about faline, some of whose characteristics i’ve misappropriated as belonging to thumper.

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