Saturday, December 3, 2011

Ooooh, breezy down there--skating in a skirt

"This skirt is nice." Dance Coach said, "It makes you look like lady, you should wear it to test. Judges like skirts."

I managed to suppress an eye roll. This is the same man who two weeks ago, when I told him I had a skating skirt told me, "No, too late to change costume. What if it bunches up in hold. Or falls off."

I mean, where does he get this stuff? Is it just guy talk?

So, I'd never skated in a skirt before today. The skirt itself is from REI (yes the 'camping' store) and is a lightweight fleece kind of material that ends just above my knees. Under that I've got a pair of booty shorts from Target, and under that a pair of footless Mondor tight from my skate tech. 

First thing, I learned is, even though I had on booty shorts underneath, 60 years of modesty kept me from propping my foot up on my knee to put on my Silipos and my in boot stockings. Plus I had to keep my knees together while I bent over to tie my laces. Note to self, either get to the rink before the crowds show up, or get used to flashing people.

So, I'm the first person to step on the ice, and it's wonderful. They must have finally got someone who knows how to drive the Zamboni. I take a deep stroke and just glide the length of the rink. Wonderful.

It took me a good five minutes to become accustomed to the feel of the wind on my thighs. I even dared do a spiral, with my free foot pointing in the direction where there's no people. I could get used to this.

Then the public shows up. It's public skate. It's winter. It's crowded.  Coach starts chasing me up and down the rink yelling at me. I'm working on my extension in a power stroke, and this guy in hockey skates crosses  from my right to left,  then abruptly stops in front of me. No time or space to even do an emergency stop, so I grab his arm, use him like an axle, rotate around him, let go and slam myself into the boards without knocking him over. "Sorry," I yell. "Sorry." Coach yells. We're back to lesson in a heartbeat. As far as I know, he's still standing there.

We tried the Dutch Waltz a few times to practice for the test. At one point a little girl got in our way while we were in hold. I tried to skate around her to the left; Coach tried to lead be around to the right. We just sort of didn't hit her somehow, with coach still counting the beats.  If dance tests are conducted like obstacle courses, I'm ready.

Coach finally threw up his hands. "Too many people. Lesson only half an hour today." 

And it's going to get worse every weekend through January. 

By the way, getting boots off without flashing people is just as hard as putting them on. I'm saving skirts for special occasions from now on.

Yeah, right. That's gonna happen.

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