Posted 1/30/2019 17:01 (#7285179) Subject: Memories of Past Winters - Vol 3
Silver Creek MN
This is a short story I entered into a contest a local newspaper was running a few years back. Hope you enjoy it.
It all started innocently enough. Despite the protests of my wife, I was venturing out into the brutally frigid weather on a Sunday afternoon to go ice fishing. Cabin Fever had it’s grip on me, and I decided risking frostbite was a much better choice than staying home and enduring a Bachelor marathon. I turned the key on my old pickup, which was about as excited about getting going as I was on the first day of Fourth Grade. After a half a minute of turning over reluctantly, the engine fired and then squealed like a pig until it finally got some oil flowing.
Having grown up in Central Minnesota, I had seen my share of cold winters. But the current winter season was different. It almost seemed to have a cruel, sinister quality to it. It was as if you could hear someone laughing as your nose hairs froze when you stepped outside. The weatherman talked about a “Polar Vortex” influencing the weather, but I suspected it was Old Man Winter reminding us that he was still in charge.
I pulled off the County Road and onto the frozen surface of North Twin Lake as the Northwest wind howled and whipped the snow across the ice. Then came the unmistakable cracking noise of the ice expanding. This was something I had gotten used to over the years, however the noise never lasted as long as it did now. Obscured by the blowing snow, a huge crevasse had opened up in the ice, revealing that the lake had frozen solid! Not only that, but the crack continued beyond the lake bottom into the earth below. I furiously pumped the anti-lock brakes, but to no avail. My truck and I tumbled downwards for what seemed an eternity until we came to a crashing halt.
Thanks to the life saving features of airbags and goose down jackets, I somehow survived the crash. As I surveyed the landscape, I was able to spot a lone figure huddled in the cold. He had a reddish hue and an evil stare. He looked as though he had once been powerful and now was reduced to pity. As this pathetic pitchfork wielding demon turned his angry gaze on me, it all became crystal clear. It was so cold, Hell had frozen over!! Which of course prompted the question that was begging to be asked – did the Vikings win the Super Bowl??