If you are a CP blog regular, you've read comments posted by Brooke. If you are related to me you can go check out our family tree on http://www.geni.com/ to see how she's related to you. If you are not related to me, she's a second cousin (or something like that) on my dad's side. She lives in Omaha, NE USA which is where I was born.
Brooke's Dad, Kim, is my dad's cousin but he's only 8 years older than me and I've always been fond of him. Kim used to come from Nebraska to visit his Aunt Joyce, my grandmother, in Denver when I was young. (NOTE: Kim is a man. Yes, I know this is a woman's name. Don't tell him. He's like 6'7" and he works for the Teamsters so he knows people who will kick your booty!) Kim lives with his wife, Brenda, and his two younger daughters, Mary and Bailey in a wee little smalltown in the middle of the USA, Fremont, NE. We are talking corn country!
One year Kim brought his snowmobile out to Denver with him and somehow talked my mother and father into letting him take 3 of us snowmobiling up in the Rocky Mountains. I must have been about 12. Shelby would have been about 10. And George must have been about 8. I don't seem to remember Tyson and Stephanie being there so they must have been to young to go along.
If I was only 12 that means Kim was only 20. Now what would my parent's must have been thinking to let 3 of their children go off with a 20 year old snowmobiling I have no idea! And why would a 20 year old bloke want to take 3 children into the wilderness with him?
We went up into the Rocky Mountain National Park. I seem to recall we went up near Estes Park. Kim would drive the snowmobile around with one of us on the back and leave the other 2 of us in the car. Wouldn't do that nowadays, would you?
Finally, it was nearing the end of the day and I talked Kim into thinking that I was old enough to drive myself. So, he let me! I followed the trail, starting slowly at first but quickly gained confidence and speed. With the wind in my hair, I thought I was just sooooo cool!
Then I hit a hill and the snowmobile jumped. I thought I could keep the blades straight but it didn't quite work out that way. When I landed the blades turned suddenly to the left. I went down a steep hill and landed on a piece of ice. I could see the river rushing past me on both sides. At first, I didn't move. And then I started to shake.
I knew crying wasn't going to help. Screaming wasn't going to help. I tried to restart the snowmobile but it was flooded. I tried to push but it wouldn't budge. I must have weighed 70 pounds, so duh!
I sat down getting rather frightened as the day grew grey with the setting sun. And then I heard voices. I yelled out for help and found 4 cross country skiers at the top of the hill above me.
They took off their skies and slid down the hill. They helped me get the snowmobile off the ice. Who am I kidding. They got the snowmobile off the ice. I just stood there on the shore. They got the engine started and one of the guys drove the snowmobile up the hill.
I climbed aboard, thanked them profusely, and headed back to the car, VERY slowly and cautiously. I arrived expecting Kim to yell and scream at me. but, of course, he didn't know what had happened. he just thought I had been having a blast.
I didn't confess the truth of what happened until years later when I was an adult. But I learned so many lessons that day! All thanks to Kim!