Hey guys...Where are the boards?
Let me start by stating emphatically that yes, I am a Canadian. I have a birth certificate and a passport that will attest to that fact, and to be honest I have far too much of a fascination with Tim Hortons to qualify for citizenship in any other country. Despite my Canadian stature however, I've never learned to skate (or ski, or curl, or snowshoe, but let's focus on the matter at hand). When I was young I lived out East, and like most families who spend six months a year neck deep in snow, every winter we had a backyard ice rink. The difference between our family and others however, was that we learned how to play broomball instead of hockey. Now if you don't know what broomball is, don't feel bad. It's a little obscure, but imagine a hockey game where the puck is replaced by a ball, the sticks are replaced by brooms, and instead of skating, everybody walks. This was my childhood sport, and the reason why I can't skate.
So with my fine skating pedigree in hand, I rolled up to the Jim Stuart skating rink only to find that there are no boards around the outside of the rink, there's simply a couple inch high ledge surrounded by a walkway. This was going to seriously impact my ability to look good. Sitting on the edge of a rink does not imply the same level of aptitude that standing does, and spending any more than a couple of minutes there is a sure fire sign that you don't really want to be out on the ice. I scanned the area for something close enough to the rink to use as support, but the only thing I could find was a lamp post that would require me to straddle the walkway in order to keep one foot on the ice and one hand on the pole. Nope, there was no escaping it. This was going to be one of those "not looking good" experiences.
|I guess I could always land on the ducks|
It's a little unfortunate that you can't rent skates at the rink, especially as it's only a short walk from one of the premier hotels in our city. I can't imagine that families on vacation pack skates along with them, so it's a bit of a lost opportunity, but considering it's only in it's second year of operation, the rink has been a resounding success. In fact, they've had to extend the operating hours because so many Kelowna residents want to use it. Apparently a lot of people in Kelowna own their own skates. Have they never heard of broomball?