Yesterday, Stitch was the only kid to show up for Boy's Ice Show rehearsal. The only one. Even the Coach was looking at me like I was insane. "Shouldn't you just go??" seemed to be the undercurrent of the afternoon. Nope. Not going anywhere, thank you. If those other kids can't be bothered to show up, then I will gladly take a half hour of private time on the big rink with a free coach, which is about a $200 value. Yessir, I think we'll stay!
Doubtless Free Coach can't and won't do much, but he did pace Stitch through some crossovers and spirals and shoot the ducks. Hey, that's enough for me, and with Coach out of town I won't tell if you won't. I parked my butt on the bench and stayed. Another Coach was looking at me sideways, perhaps also wondering what the heck was going on, but I've earned my lessons. Ice Time is Precious Time.
Towards the end of a group lesson, the next group will start showing up, hanging off the door and waiting. Skaters on the ice and Moms with skaters not yet on the ice are all watching the clock. Watch them dart glances at it every few seconds, cramming in one more jump, one more spin. When that clock is wrong, people know it. Everyone wants their every second. When the time starts ticking past time, Moms will start pacing, and skaters dragging their asses better watch out. Get your tissues, get your guards and get out. It's my time now!
It's worse when there's a coach involved. Then the timer starts running. I have felt the angry vibrations of a mom timing a Group Coach talking on and on and on and on while the students stand still. I've timed one of them myself, and she clocked in at ten minutes of yammering before students started moving. I almost pulled him from that class. Coaches, moms don't have much time for on-ice blather.
If it's a private lesson, then the claws are out before the lesson even starts. I show up fifteen minutes before Stitch's start time, and I have him ready to go on the bench just outside the ice door, waiting. Currently I am hating our lesson time slot because it overlaps with a high level group who unapologetically take up the majority of the ice. I feel this cheats Stitch, so I'm anxious to find another time. (Even to the point of switching with Gordon, even though he doesn't have the speed to keep up or dodge. I've debated bringing it up with Ms V.) I have felt bad when Coach has stopped with another student on a public session to talk to Stitch. She's on someone else's dime, she shouldn't be bothering with Stitch. I've told him not to bother his Junior Coach friend while she's with a student, nor to bother his friends if they are getting a lesson.
Sunday afternoon, though, other girls and moms began arriving, looking out at the one boy with some raised brows. "Just him?" asked one mom. "Why even stay?" she looked at me funny. Nope, I'm not leaving early. Noon is when my time is up, and Noon is when I'm leaving. Stay off my ice please!
That having been said, I'm going to step out and say that I did do something terrible on Sunday. I suffer from Hot Feet, and the suddenly warm day had making my feet miserable. An ice surface seemed like a relief. So, while Stitch was on the ice alone and Other Coach was out talking to someone, I took my shoe off and put my bare foot on the ice. Worst. Idea. Ever. Do not ever do this, no matter the temptation.