For my daughter’s 10th Birthday, we held a skating party at the local skating rink. As I laced my roller skates, a flood of childhood memories rushed through my mind.
I’m and 80s kid and roller skating was at its peak during my childhood. I can still remember my first pair of skates. The skates looked like someone stuck four wheels on a pair of blue sneakers. I got them for Christmas when I was about my daughter’s age.
Back then, we didn’t wear helmets or pads. Not that they would have helped considering the crazy things we did on our skates. We’d hang on to the backs of trucks to see how fast we could go, build ramps and jump over kids who were dumb enough to lie in the road, play skate tackle football, and have races through busy streets.
My daughter learned to roller skate, excuse me, I mean in-line skate at her school. Once a week, they have a skating class during P.E. I had to learn by falling down and skinning my knees on the hard concrete.
When I perfected my neighborhood skating technique, I was ready for the ultimate skating challenge: The Roller Rink. Everyone from the neighborhood went to the rink to hang out, skate, and learn some new tricks. The top skaters were fast, agile, and displayed great showmanship. They could skate backwards, do “crazy legs,” crossovers, dances, jumps, and flips. Although I wasn’t in the top-tier of skating talent, I could hold my own in the rink.
The skating fad lasted though my middle school years and slowly faded away until Rollerblades made it popular again in the early 90s. I was excited to discover that my college had planned a skating party for our freshmen orientation. It was cool to see a diverse group of people from around the country skating, having fun, and sharing a childhood memories of the skating rink.
I bought my daughter a pair of skates when she was in kindergarten and tried to teach her to skate, but she was too afraid of falling to want to learn. That’s why I was so proud to see her confidently zipping around the rink while some of her friends stayed closed to the rail.
During her favorite song, “Firework,” I took my daughter’s hand and skated alongside her. It was special moment that I hope my daughter will remember.
I definitely won’t forget it. Skating in that rink with my daughter made me feel as I were 10 years old again.
Question: Did you ever go to roller rinks when you were a kid?