[While searching desperately for holiday bows in the basement, I found an old email about skating wedged into a box on my “wrapping center,” which started out as an empty table with plenty of room for wrapping but now contains the following: 9,462 pieces of kiddie artwork; assorted holiday decorations that we never put back in their proper storage places; and an old wooden Thomas train collection that we’re afraid to touch because of the lead paint recalls, even though none of specific models was recalled. Anyway, here goes, something related to our theme of “ice.”]
Nothing says happy holidays like the thud of small children smashing into the walls of a hockey rink amidst wreaths and twinkling lights. Or so it seemed, on our recent skating adventure, during which no one appeared to mind the occasional fall or bump, due to the festive mood.
Husband dazzled everyone with his fancy moves. He has not lost one bit of skating savvy since his high school hockey golden days. I, on the other hand, had to concentrate strenuously just in order to remain upright and forward-moving. Which is weird because when my sister and I were little, we could skate backwards, do twirls, and so on. I even briefly entertained the idea of going pro (okay, that’s a lie but I did go through an I-heart-Ice Castles phase: took lessons, learned how to do figure eights and tiny jumps, and–most importantly–had fluffy pink pompoms on my skates). However, quite inexplicably, it was like I had never skated before. Ever. Well maybe a little explicably…after all, I am (cough cough) years older. Or perhaps it was the loaner skates that made me as wobbly as a newborn colt. In any case, after much flailing, I eventually managed to produce a respectable glide.
During the Zamboni’s re-icing event, we headed over to the snack bar for some refreshing hot cocoa, as we were chilled to the bone. There were four teens “working”; I use that term loosely, as two were having a broom fight, one was staring into space, and the other one was handling orders, which mostly consisted of telling people that although there were signs all over the place for popcorn and pizza, they did not have any popcorn or pizza. We ordered hot cocoa, which cost $425 dollars for a cup the size of a thumb. The water? No warmer than a recently melted icicle. The chocolate? Powder congealed in a sad lump at the bottom of the cuplet. It was neither “hot” nor “cocoa.” That snack bar is at risk of being sued for false advertising, what with the popcorn/pizza snafu and the “hot cocoa” deception. Not that we would sue them. But someone might.
We skated a bit more, long enough to realize that it’s a good thing they play music to signal Happy Fun Time, or else we might notice that we were all just going around and around in circles. Which is kind of what it feels like to work on the same writing project for an extended period of time. And a sense of flailing about on a slippery surface can happen at any point in said project, too. Come to think of it, skating may be a perfect metaphor for writing. So: Happy Fun Time Wishes to You.