She steps on to the ice with a well-used skate. It has years of crossovers traced in the blades, the laces tied thousands of times. Her clothing is loose but will keep her warm as she shouts directions at her players crossing the ice in ultimate desperation. She holds a stick carefully taped by hands with years of experience. There are spots where the paint of the logo has chipped away from being hit. As she takes a few steps, the blade of her stick finds a puck and flicks it several feet in the air. She laughs as a girl dives so as to avoid being nailed by the falling puck. Her cheeks have the lines of someone whose seen many a victory, and her eyes have the wisdom of someone who has seen many a loss. It is the face of someone who cares deeply about how her team plays, whether she is on it, or in charge. Then as a senior flies down the ice and makes a perfect goal, the coach sends a pass down while the player is not looking, and then makes some comment about the girl’s inability to catch the puck form there is a glimmer in her eye as if she is laughing, and then a smile appears to accompany the glimmer, followed by another pass to a player who is not as good as the senior, but catches it because after all, the coach meant for it to be caught.
April 2, 2013