Ah, ice-skating…that most wintery of pastimes, a sport I have have adored since I was a little girl and saw figure skating on TV. Torville and Dean, Dancing on Ice…all making my little Wiggle heart go flutter. Alas, the Hastings ice-rink has been derelict since it closed in 1997 and I never did get to go when it was open. The nearest permanent one is too far away to get to without a car, so my only recourse is the temporary one which opens in our shopping centre every December for around a month. It’s only been going for a few years and I just hadn’t got around to going yet, so when my friend Louise’s teenage daughter Lexy asked if I would go with her, I jumped at the chance. I met up with Lexy on the 7th of December 2013 at Priory Meadow Shopping Centre. We paid for our session and found skates in our sizes. We had a little wait for the previous session to end, so we watched the other skaters for a while.
When it was our turn, we filed onto the rink one-by-one. I’m afraid I kind of stepped on the ice, froze, and then inched out of the way when I realised I was blocking the entrance. I haven’t got very much experience with roller-blading and none whatsoever with skating, so it was always going to be a little awkward, especially as it takes me a few minutes to convince my legs to move, but eventually, I was off, like a snail in a race! It is quite a small rink and there were quite a few people on it, but I soon realised the greatest liabilities were the children, many of whom were aided by giant penguins that they pushed about whilst flailing madly with their legs. Prone to changing direction without the slightest warning, they each consumed around a square meter of ice and collisions were sometimes impossible to avoid. Lexy, being a keen and practiced skater, was literally skating circles around everybody at high speed, but she did stop to take some photos for me towards the end of our half hour.
Afterwards, we went back to Lexy and Lou’s house and Lexy made me some hot chocolate, which is just the thing for a cold winter’s day. I was pretty pleased with myself; I had a lot of fun, I didn’t knock down any kids and I didn’t fall over once (although there was one dodgy moment.)
A day or two later, I showed my friend Thea my photos and she got no end of amusement from them. She says it’s funny seeing an adult skating like a beginner because she mostly sees young children skate that way. Being Canadian, obviously she was born ice-skating 😛 I offered to film it next time and she was quite taken with the idea, so come next December, I may well add a video to this post.