Simon the sad melting snowman a hit in Gloucesterhsire
AS last week's snow fell, the Jones family, of Hardwicke, brought a snowman to life who appeared on the front of The Citizen. Here is Iwan Jones' tale of Simon the snowman...
WHEN the snow fell heavily on Friday January 18, like many I was stranded at home and our sons (Elliot, eight and Zak, five) would not be at school in Longney as it was closed, at least for the day.
Our boys both said 'let's make a snowman', to which I said 'yes, I used to be the world champion snowman builder, let's go'. Off we went donned with boots, gloves, hats and the usual gear that any world champion would use.
First was the body. No, second was the body, first was a quick snow ball fight between two brothers clearly ganging up on dad.
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The body was then carved out by an old family traditional method of 'rolling and patting' to ensure a nice tight ball of the white stuff. Once the body was placed in position, we began to sculpture the head using the same secret traditional method as before.
Meanwhile, the boys collected pebbles for buttons and discarded twigs for arms. Next, they knocked on a neighbour's door asking for the bestest, juiciest carrot they could spare. The head was carefully placed upon the body. The once world champion's heart started to pound at the noise of joyous children as they started to gather to look at the soon-to-be masterpiece.
The button pebbles were carefully placed, followed by the twigged arms. Then genius struck, Zak proposed the use of more pebbles for a mouth and eyes. The claim was carried and the mouth was placed, followed by eyes.
Lastly, the nose, and what a carrot our favourite neighbours had supplied.
We folded our arms, stepped back and stared with pride. But there was something missing... At that moment, almost like a slow motion re-creation of the opening of Baywatch, mum came out with the missing pieces – a scarf and hat. It was complete, he looked happy and so were we. At that point Zak struck gold.
"Simon should be his name," he said.
For days all we spoke about was how happy Simon was and how privileged we were to have him as part of our family. He became a talking point for all our neighbours, even the postman had a kind word for him.
During the amazing week, we had cars stopping to take a photograph, children having their picture with Simon, even the odd autograph. It was a crazy week for him.
But Simon was starting to look slightly unhappy due to the warmer weather. We gathered as a family and decided that it was 'his time'. With tears shed and goodbyes. I carefully dismantled Simon, whilst inviting him back the same time next year.
The next day, to our astonishment, mum spotted Simon on the front page of The Citizen. Shouting in the supermarket tills at the top of her voice "it's Simon our snowman", to the amazement of the staff and shoppers, she held the newspaper aloft. We had no idea that he had been 'papped'.
Thank you The Citizen for giving a wonderful week a wonderful ending.
The family's poem for Simon:
YOU made us laugh, you made us sing
With all the joy, that you did bring
You made us scream and shout, out loud
Everyone knows that you were nice
You had a heart as warm as ice
Thank you Simon, you have made us proud.
By Iwan, Faye, Elliot and Zak Jones