The Big Flush
It was the end of January, and for the first time anyone could remember, our town had no snow at all. All the kids at school were grumbling about not being able to go snowboarding or have snowball fights, but for Gordon, the complete lack of snow was cause for greater concern.
“We usually have 3 or 4 snow days in January alone, and this year, we’ve had none,” he complained. “All this school is stressing me out. I need a few days off to stop and smell the snowflakes.”
“Yup,” agreed Paulo. “Spring is right around the corner, and it
looks like we won’t have a single snow day this year.”
“I don’t remember a year without snow,” sighed Mrs. Hoagsbrith. “And more importantly, a few good snow days. The kids are really stressing me out. I’d kill for a few days off just to stop and smell the peace and quiet.” All the teachers nodded their heads in agreement and looked longingly out the staff room window at the playground.
“Look on the bright side,” said Mr. Evans. “At least we don’t have to worry about those darn snow hills!”
Later that afternoon, the sun came out and the temperature rose even higher. At recess, kids stripped out of their heavy winter clothes, and coats and mitts littered the playground.
“I can’t take it anymore,” said Gordon. “Boys, desperate times call for desperate measures. If Mother Nature won’t snow on her own, we’ll let Mother Science do it for her.”
“How can science make it snow?” I asked.
“Easy,” replied Gordon with a gleam in his eye. “I read in a science magazine, or was it a cartoon I saw? I can’t remember, but whatever. It said that if you flush 10 ice cubes down the toilet before going to bed, it will snow the next day! So if I can get every kid in school to flush 10 ice cubes down the toilet tonight, we’ll have a huge snowstorm by tomorrow!!”
“I don’t believe it,” said Paulo.
“It’s true!” insisted Gordon. “They said that flushing ice cubes down the toilet causes it to snow 3 out of 2 times!”
“Three out of two times?” I said. I liked those odds. “Count me in!”
Gordon, Paulo and I spent the rest of the recess running around telling everyone about our plan. It was called Operation Big Flush and it was top secret. No parents and no teachers were allowed to hear of our plan, and that night, an entire town of kids snuck ten ice cubes out of their freezers and flushed them down the toilet before going to bed. Naturally, many kids, including Gordon, figured that if ten ice cubes made it snow, then 20 or even 30 ice cubes could really cause a blizzard. I went to bed that night with a smile on my face, while visions of snowflakes danced in my head.
When I awoke the next morning, I sprang from my bed, flew to the window and threw up the sash. What I saw caused my jaw to drop in disbelief: clear blue skies and not a single snowflake in sight. The grass had never looked greener and I swore I heard robins chirping.
Gordon looked as miserable as I did as we slowly made our way to school that morning, dragging our feet. We were met at the gates of the playground by an angry mob of students demanding to know what had gone wrong. Why was there no snow? Where was the blizzard we had promised? When were we going to get our snow day?? Luckily the bell rang just then and we made our getaway. Once safely in our seats, we were met by the angry glares of our classmates. Just when I was thinking that this was going to be a very long, difficult day, Mr. Evans made an announcement.
“May I have your attention, please,” he said, sounding very light-hearted and cheerful. “I regret to inform you that all of the public buildings in town are experiencing difficulties with their plumbing, including Danglemore Public School. None of the toilets at school are flushing properly, and only ice water is coming out of the fountains. Apparently, huge chunks of ice are clogging up the entire town’s sewage system, and unfortunately, we will have to close the school until the problem is sorted out.”
Cries of joy and whoops could be heard all over the school, and then the students joined in the teachers’ celebration. Grabbing our backpacks, we stampeded out the doors of the school and headed home to enjoy our first ever Ice Day!
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