The Rink

Willie O’Ree Place, Fredericton, NB, Canada

To me, ice rinks are holy places. I have spent 35+ years in and out of ice rinks. I have had some of the best times of my life with some of my best friends in ice rinks. I have spent amazing times with my children in ice rinks. I have learned about myself. I have learned life lessons. I have experienced the whole gamut of emotions.

Every time I walk into one, that all floods back. The first thing that gets you is the smell. Every rink smells the same – yet different. It’s the smell of the ice. The sound is next. Is it silent and hallow? Raucous and rumbling? Slightly humming?

Some are huge, modern and will hold the population of a small city. Some, tiny, old and freezing cold – literal ‘barns’. And everything in between. Each has its own magic.

I think about the number of people who have experienced these same things. In the same buildings. Over great spans of time. And for an instant we are all united.