Now and Then – Cardrona

During summer, a blue dome encompasses the dry, mountainous landscape. Small irregular-shaped balls of white are dispersed across the celestial sphere, remaining stationary even with the frail but satisfyingly tepid breeze, which blows the hair on your head only slightly. In between all of this is a big, yellow star that constantly fires an intense beam of bright glare. The heat that radiates off the beam feels as though it is searing your skin.

 

The brown dirt beneath your feet at the base of mountain often crumbles as you walk over it. Higher up the mound the dirt is much more solid from the thousands of tyres that roll over it every day. Various tyres are controlled by the various bikes that are ridden by fearless people that accelerate their way down the steep incline at insane speeds. These people are all dressed in colourful outerwear, making them easily visible across the scene. They all wear helmets that protect their entire head, making the people’s faces invisible.

 

Down the centre of the trails, stands towering, metal poles, which hold up the chairs that carry the riders up above the few clouds that appear in the sky. It can be heard creaking as you are carried up. Intense strength is used to constantly drag the tonnes of riders and bikes up the hill, it is incredible.

 

When you’re out on the trails it is immensely peaceful, apart from the almost inaudible sound of the hum that the tyre tread makes on the earth; it is so quiet you could almost hear a pin drop. As you approach the last stretch, large, yellow buildings come into your peripheral vision. A clocktower can be seen in amongst the buildings looking proudly, down over the mountainside like he owns the land.  

 

As winter closes in, the feeling of having an enormous, spherical ceiling is ravaged by the obnoxious grey and black clouds that fill what is normally a magnificent blue sky. Instead of small, white fluffy balls scattered around, there is one angry-looking grey that masks off anything on the other side.

 

The strong gale that blows directly at you at hundreds of kilometres an hour burns any bare skin that is out. Behind the murky clouds, the sun is nearly opaque, all that can be seen is a white circle that stands out between the enormous, misty cumulonimbus. The sun must be tired in this cold season, because it doesn’t feel as though it is pushing any of its heat down to the Earth.

 

Below the long sticks that are attached to the most uncomfortable boots you could ever wear is a soft substance that is blindingly, bright white like a swan’s feathers. This matter that covers all the dirt on the ground disperses a crisp waft that nips at your fingers, making them feel numb and lifeless.

 

As you step over the white, retrograde dirt you can be traced, as your footprints are mimicked as you tread on the floor. Small flakes of the ethereal material continually drop from the heavens, floating calmly and gently to the ground. It slowly piles up on top of itself, but within seconds is demolished by a flash of people riding wooden strips connected to the soles of their feet. These people carve the whiteness with their sharp edges, making a hiss as they shred over the mountain. The small mounds become a smooth, flat surface, this happens over and over as though it is in a cycle.
The towering mountain is buzzing with people everywhere, completely unlike the opposite season. Poking the clouds up with its head, the clocktower can be seen through a murky view, the rooftops of all the buildings covered in a white duvet.

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