On Christmas morning as we unwrapped gifts, Dave suddenly pulled out his computer, typed in a few things, and then told Claire and I to check our emails.
Some happy squeals reverberated through the house as we saw the contents of the email.
He had bought tickets for us to see the European Figure Skating Championships...being held in Ostrava!
While I'd seen signs around town in early December for the championships, I never thought I'd get to GO! This was seriously one of those "dream come true" moments for me.
Like some of you who grew up in the 70's, my family rarely missed "Wide World of Sports" on ABC at 5 PM every Saturday. My mom made a little party for my dad, brother and I nearly every week as we settled in for an hour and a half of sports. It didn't take much to make it a party...some Coke and chips usually did the trick!
I watched my share of car racing, motocross, weightlifting and even arm wrestling!
But the best was always the figure skating events.
It wasn't that I was an ice skater, or ever even dreamed of being one. I just enjoyed watching the skaters do what they do! Elegant, skilled, athletic and talented, they brought the "thrill of victory" as well as the "agony of defeat" (a line quoted every week on Wide World of Sports!) while giving their all out on the ice.
And now, thanks to my dear husband, he made a dream come true and gave us all the opportunity to see skaters in person. And not just at any event...but at the European Championships!
We went in the afternoon and first watched the short programs for the ice dancers. Then went back in the evening for long (and final) program of the pairs. It was an absolute thrill to be watching them in person!
Our tickets had been for seats up at the top of the arena, which did allow for a nice, wide view of the whole event. But in the evening, I got a call from a friend who happened to be sitting down closer to the ice, and she said there were seats free in front of her.
So down we went for the rest of the evening!
We truly cheered for every nation that was represented, but you should have heard the cheers from the crowd when the only Czech couple competing came onto the ice!! They gave an absolutely amazing performance, and ended up in 7th place out of 16. Not bad for our relatively small nation!
We stayed all the way to the end of the evening, enjoying the whole program so very much. And all the better being close to our friends!
At the end of the night it was gold for the Russian pair, silver for the German couple, and bronze for France.
And we left with big smiles on our faces for having had the joy of being at this unique event held right here in our very own "backyard"!
"Thank you Dave for such a memorable Christmas present!"