As far as my sense of urgency goes, this post is actually late. I already had it laid out in my head what I was going to put out here. I had taken all sorts of photos that were going to be perfect (and still are) for this entry. Then I come home Sunday and my camera decides it doesn't want to act right. The photos were there and intact, but it was refusing to transfer them to my pc for whatever reason. That meant I had to go with my backup post about the Des Moines exodus. Funny thing was I didn't expect an ancillary post to get as much response as it did. You just never know what strikes a cord with people.
So anyway, D informed us that her company was having some deal going on where they were having free ice skating for their employees and their families for a couple of hours on Sunday. That's the least they could do since the place is hell incarnate. But we decided it would be free family fun and would be something different for a change. I had already decided I wouldn't be skating and would instead invest my time in being the all-time photographer. I'm much better at that anyway.
At first, Mariah and Elijah were very hesitant. It didn't sound like it would be fun to them. After more probing, I discovered that the reason they were of that mindset was that neither of them knew how to do it. I explained that it was the perfect opportunity to try something new. I couldn't very well tell them that it was easy to learn because I didn't know that for a fact. The last time I tried to ice skate I was about 12 or 13 and my aunt had taken some of the cousins to Crown Center in Kansas City. I skated against that railing on the wall for an hour before I finally gave up and never tried again. I had decided that if God had intended for us to skate, he would have given us long, skinny, sharp feet and covered the entire earth in ice.
Not surprisingly, they caught on to it rather quick. They were skating against the rail for the first couple of laps, but in no time at all, they were zipping around the rink like they had known how to do it all along. They never did get the stopping part down though. Elijah's idea of stopping was going at the wall full speed and then bracing for impact with his arms. Whatever works, I guess.
Zeke never did quite get the hang of it. You would think it would be easiest for him since he's the youngest and they're supposed to catch on quicker. It looked like what it was was that he would get too impatient and try to run on the ice. He couldn't quite get the balance part down. It also didn't help that the Iowa Stars mascot was in the house and Zeke was reminded of his terrible fear of people in huge costumes.
D's youngest sister also went with us. She may have even been the reason that the idea came about (besides the fact that it was free, that is). Kendra is 12-years-old and has already taken first place in the Iowa Games for her ice skating. That may not sound that impressive but she's also been skating for only less than a year. I tried to get her to do a triple axel (so sad I even know what that is) but she's not THAT good yet. She could do a single one; however, she was always too fast for the camera. I had to instead settle for this action shot.
One thing that I always realize when watching skating is I always gain a new found respect for professional hockey players. To be able to stay balanced, skate that hard and fast and take physical pounding from heavily-padded 200+ pound men while chasing a tiny puck takes HUGE talent. It may not be one of my favorite sports, but I give those athletes much props for what they do.