Camp starts this morning. I got to Salt Lake last night in time to get on the ice for a free pre-camp skate, which was definitely a good thing. I am not one of those people who can, after a significant time off ice, step confidently back onto the oval and, with a casual push, glide gracefully away. No, my re-appearance on ice consists of a hesitant step, a lurching push, and a tense, stiff-arms-for-balance wobble down the ice. Best not to let camp leader Derek Parra witness that!
The skating was fun, though, and actually felt pretty good (aside from a ridiculously high heartrate and out-of-breathness). I got to skate four laps behind Eric Kraan, who, with his wife Kim, owns the SLC skateshop SkateNow. I don't skate behind people very often (Coach TieGuy's workouts are usually different from what others on the ice are doing) so I tend to suck at it. Yesterday was no different; the poor guy who was behind me had to deal with my continually coasting when I got too close to Eric, then speeding up to close the gap again. Still, it was a blast; Eric is one of those incredibly smooth, fluid skaters who are a joy to watch. I think I should spend more time skating behind people like him!
I managed to rein myself in before I did too many laps and risked coming to camp already sore. There were plenty of masters friends to catch up with before the 7 o'clock pre-camp meeting, so it wasn't too hard to get myself off the ice. The meeting was fun, and Kim and Eric surprised us by giving all the skaters goodie bags containing some of the things we will need most this weekend: good skating socks, energy chews and Honey Stinger energy waffles, and an energy shot. Pretty cool! Derek talked for a bit, and as always, held everyone's attentions riveted. I expect to learn a lot again!
Then it was back to the hotel, for a peanut butter sandwich, a protein bar, and an extended chat with the tech support guy for the hotel's wifi. Apparently my Dell laptop likes to make connecting to wifi complicated, so the poor guy had to spend ten minutes walking me through the steps to connect. He was very nice, but I think I first heard a hint of well-controlled exasperation creep into his voice when I answered his question "what's your operating system?" with "huh?" Eventually (obviously), we got it handled and I was able to surf for an hour or so before going to bed.
Unfortunately, the sleeping thing didn't work so well. For some reason I couldn't get to sleep, and finally got up at 12:30 and watched an hour of "Dodgeball." Four hours of sleep before a nine-hour-day of workouts should be interesting! Then it was waffle time at the hotel's continental breakfast--accompanied, unfortunately, by Fox News on the breakfast nook TV. This is, after all, Utah. I ate my waffle quickly and went back up to my room...blog update, packing, another PB sandwich made, and it's time to go!