To Be Young Again
One great joy of Grand fatherhood is observing slo-mo hockey.
Grandson Cole (6) plays and his brother Liam (3) is envious. They live with their parents in the Northwest Territories.
Officials make it a joy for youngsters to have fun playing hockey, Parents don’t yell at officials and civilized comportment rules. I believe there are still Wayne Gretzkys coming up.
Normal six-year-old children are not large nor are they heavy. Watching them arrive with a sports bag larger and heavier than they are, brings a sense of moving in for a long-term stay.
As a novice dresser, I get precise, almost condescending directions for order, placement and tightness for each of the numerous items.
In the good old days, we had shin pads. What a difference. Today, the ready for hockey six-year-old, is large and heavy. How do they manage?
Well, they do. There are the horizontals and the verticals, each with wooden sticks that holds them up – or so it seems – but not all the time – and in a flash, the horizontals become vertical again and that changes too – there is this constant bouncing of small joyful helmeted boys and girls charging in a herd and following the puck – again – sort of.
Bubble wrapped, suitably protected, held up by a stick, the dilemma is what to do when the puck is in range. The conscious lifting of the stick to attempt changing the puck’s trajectory risks two things:
(1) Hitting it and
(2) Becoming horizontal again.
Bored chasing the puck, one of the verticals takes a break at centre ice, looking and acting like a forward, waiting for the puck, ready to score. There is no shame in missing the puck and falling because the upholstered bottom just bounces the player vertical again and he or she moves on unperturbed.
I can’t do that.
It doesn’t seem to matter much when someone scores. A whoop or two followed by a medley of players going horizontal and vertical, mad scrambles, and lots of fun noise – and the game goes on. There is more excitement when a shift is over.
To be young again!