by Renee Tomcanin
Ah, winter. Brisk winds, dropping temperatures, and of course, snow days.
Snow days are truly meant to be savored, and one of the favorite activities to when everything is shut down is to go sled riding, or as you from the Eastern half the state call it, “sledding.” But what is there to use when you are miles away from your garage full of plastic sleds and toboggans? A cafeteria tray, of course!
The benefits of using a tray over many other forms of makeshift sleds are numerous. For one, they are readily available and easy to obtain. Everyone eats at the cafeteria, especially at a small school like this. And since it is winter, a large, warm overcoat provides a perfect means for getting your tray out of the cafeteria. And when you’re done enjoying the winter wonderland outside, you can always return it at your next meal.
Trays are sturdy, unlike some of those other items often used to go sled riding. They are made from similiar material as the real thing, and it is even stronger than the plastic in the old sleds from our younger days. And the fun doesn’t have to be limited to cafeteria trays. A good cookie sheet is just as good. With a good push, you can go flying down over the hill with the wind blowing in your face making your cheek rosy and warm like in your favorite holiday tune. Add a little Crisco or oil or other lubricant and the speed, and the fun, increases.
A good tray will last for many sled rides. There is no risk of ripping or shredding as in other conventional substitutes for a sled. Even if you hit a hidden rock or bump, your tray will remain intact, and you may even spare your behind unneccesary pain and suffering.
True, the tray is difficult to steer your first few times gliding down the hill, but you can get the hang of it. Then again, that feeling of being out of control just adds to the fun of sled riding. You sit on the sled, go rushing downhill, hit a bump and fly into a pile of snow. These are experiences that can only be truly savored on a tray. Soon you’ll be able to get the hang of tray riding, and it is easier to handle and a little less haphazard than other means of sled riding.
Trays are economical. Trays are readily available. Trays are reliable. Trays are more fun. Trays get you from point A to point B as quickly and excitedly as one can imagine. There is no debate. When the snow piles up and classes are cancelled, you want to get out and enjoy the day as soon as possible. If you are in the right mind frame and want to relive the days of your old red plastic sled, grab a tray. The experience is the same and makes for a fun afternoon of winter bliss.