i can’t believe odin is about to start his 8th hockey season. i remember very clearly thinking as we were trying out different sports when he was three years old, “oh, the local ‘learn to skate’ program will be a fun way to learn a new skill. he might stick with it for a year or two. probably won’t last.”
boy was i wrong.
a sign that fall will be soon upon us! getting the rink prepared for ice on october 26th. i’ve been helping for a few years and yet i always forget how much work it is.
laying down the cooling lines and setting up the boards while praying i’m not the guy who pinches a line and causes a leaker because i’m pretty sure the other guys who have been doing this since time began will mock me endlessly in a mostly good natured way.
we walked with odin and some hockey buddies in a local parade to raise awareness for the hockey association. even though i’m losing count of how many parades i’ve walked over the past couple of years, i don’t mind since it’s all for a good cause.
because i know a guy in marketing at organic valley, we had some organic fuel to hand out along with flyers and association swag. it’s always fun to hear an ever increasing number of people proactively yell out how much they love it.
odin snuck into hockey coaches clinic ( benefits of having mom on hockey board ), and caught me by surprise when he saw his chance and strode up to a chicago blackhawks player getting on the ice and asked, eyes wide as saucers, “can i shake your hand?” “sure thing, kid. thanks.” odin stepped away, beaming. i don’t know if the player will remember, but i know odin will never forget it. THE FEELS!
impressed the player was heartfelt even when nobody was looking. no crowds and i was standing off at a distance. also kinda proud that odin wasn’t interested in autograph or anything. just wanted to shake his hand. i think it caught the player off guard so maybe he will remember
to my chagrin, i’m still trying to track down the name of the player. the name i have doesn’t match the roster list but i think he’s a new recruit. i do know todd woodcraft was at the clinic, who is also a really nice guy and has held various coaching and scouting positions over the years. he’s in the red jacket on the left in the foreground. the blackhawks player is behind him in a red jersey.
between the regular hockey season, clinics and off season practice we’ve been watching odin play hockey for 10 straight months. odin loves every minute of it ( he’s skating in the red socks in this picture ) but i can’t say i’m not going to enjoy taking a month or so off before the regular season starts up in october.
after a brief reprieve from traveling 35 miles 3 times a week for hockey, we’re back to traveling 35 miles once a week through august to watch odin run drills in at the green island ice arena in la crosse ( he’s in the red socks on the right ).
he loves it so we love it
we got together around 20 players and parents to hand out syttende mai parade ( in honor of norwegian constitution day. yes, this is the same town where, if you look closely you might detect a hint of the local scandinavian heritage ).
hopefully we’ll get some new recruits for the association and maybe a few new organic fuel consumers
sometimes i’m surprised at how badly i can fail at capturing the moment. no posed shot of all the players on the truck. no action shot of them rollerblading around the float, handing out candy. no good shot of the truck with the great looking banners we had made. sigh.
the vending machines are filled with hockey tape and laces.
if hockey season is over and it’s 71F outside and you’re sitting in an ice arena an hour away from your home watching your kid run drills.
one of us is watching girls hockey tourney and one of us is buried in a book and being antisocial.