Monday, February 2, 2015

Best Lessons Ever

So we got a major surprise snowstorm. And I gave myself fifteen extra minutes to clean off the car at 5am, but gave up just by looking at it and hoofed it to the rink. I'm spoiled rotten, I live just 3/4 a mile away. I walked in the dark, empty streets, past walls of snow and keeping an eye out for plows. I made it in just as the Maintenance guy opened, and we shared some laughs at the massive drifts blocking the entrance. I skated for a little over an hour, again spoiled rotten by having the rink to myself a lot, and coach called me midway through to say he couldn't get out of his parking lot. I told him not to worry. My knee was bugging me anyway.

I texted him when I was done, asking him if he was okay. I hadn't heard from him and the newscast on the rink's lobby TV was full of accident reports. I walked home and settled in to enjoy my snow day. I got a surprise day off, too.

Coach called me later on and said he was fine and could take me during the public session later on in the afternoon if I was okay with it. I said sure.

So I walked back, this time down cleaner sidewalks and thinking how lucky we were that this late in winter to be getting this, and how it was going to warm up later on this week, too. I could kinda deal with this.

And I skated for an hour on the public and waited for coach to finish up with the girl he was working with. It was fun. Just really relaxing. I worked, but just not with the same intensity of a true Practice Ice. By the time Coach got to me, I was really warm and loose and ready to GO.

And go we did! I had asked to revisit the slower program for auditions for Spring Show, so he started revamping, and talking, and told me I already had everything I needed to lush up whatever I did. Big pumps, bug pushes, let it glide and flow... and I inadvertently learned a new turn in the process. For thirty minutes I was in absolute heaven on ice. Just watching him and trying to imitate as best I could, and for a few fleeting moments I had it.

Now, I'm not a fan of freestyle lessons on Public Sessions. It's hard. There a lot of distractions. And just as we were finishing up, with two minutes left in the session, a man went down hard face first. And he laid there.

I'm a "take charge" kinda gal, so I reluctantly broke the magic spell we were under to see if this dude was okay. He was not. He pushed up and blood pooled under his face, a massive gash on his eyelid area. I begged him to stay down, lay down, wait for help, but he got up anyway. Coach and I helped him to the hockey box, I stayed with him while Coach went for help. Rink staff came out with forms and towels and help, and we backed off...

Coach got his coffee and asked me to step through the program again, since there would be some time before the Zam came out while the paramedics were coming. And I smiled and stepped back and tried again. "There is blood on your jacket," Coach pointed it out. I stifled a laugh and tried that backwards catch foot spiral again. "Look behind you, you can look for your blade," he kept talking, kept on magicking. And we kept working until the gurney was rolled out with big dudes in big jackets looking at us funny.

Magic, as long as you can make it last.

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