Air Canada found my luggage, and it's more or less in one piece, which means you can all finally be subjected to a series I'll call "Pictures from Home."
It's a good thing Scott Stevens wasn't out there, as it appears I'm from the Matt Cullen school of stickhandling.
The Globe and Mail's Roy MacGregor had a great feature a few weeks back lamenting the end of the outdoor rink, but this little bit of swampland-turned-puckland in Kamloops' Albert McGowan Park is going strong back home. My old man still lives in the same house I did when I was in high school, and it's always a blast skating on the same spot we have for 20+ years.
It's pretty much the middle of nowhere, right on the edge of my small hometown that is, in itself, in the middle of nowhere, on the highway from Vancouver to Calgary. It's the perfect place for pond hockey.
Besides Wally's Coliseum, Canada has produced several backyard rinks that are frozen forever in the imagination: Roch Carrier's churchyard rink from The Hockey Sweater; the little rink in Floral, Sask., where Gordie Howe took his first turns in an old pair of skates a neighbour had dropped off; the rink by the barn in Viking, Alta., that turned six Sutter brothers into NHLers; the big rink on the sod farm in Thunder Bay that produced the four promising Staal brothers …A little piece of heaven.
It is difficult to find a Canadian hockey player who does not wax nostalgically about what those little rinks meant to them as youngsters.
Labels: Pictures from Home