Many moons ago (I forget exactly how many… maybe 5-6 years ago, how many moons is that?) anyway, a long time ago I was an average skater. I wasn’t doing many stunts or going for the speed prizes, but I could hold my own on a controlled environment.
But then my wife had a semi-serious accident while skating and a lot of other, unrelated things happened in my life and the rollerblades got left in the garage for a long time.
And in that time I learned to ski and got rather proficient at it.
So this evening when I decided that today was the day I’d take out my blades and go for a short spin near the beach at Oeiras I expected it to be a bit rough. I’m older, heavier, I got pear-shapped and my reflexes aren’t exactly what they used to be, so I was thoroughly prepared to have to start from scratch.
What I wasn’t counting on, though, was that I didn’t exactly forget all the moves. In fact I forgot some of them, of course, but others I just replaced them with ski moves. And you know what? They are totally different!
Yes, braking with your skates has absolutely nothing to do with braking with your skis. This is obvious to me, I understand perfectly well the logic and the physics behind each set of movements but the problem is that my muscle memory does not. And it is in charge when I’m skating, not my analytical brain.
So there were a few close-calls, but nothing too serious. Mostly because I was so embarrassingly slow after the first descent has put me in touch with my current reality, that I even think some joggers were sniggering behind me as they approached and then decided not to over-take me. I had my headphones on, but I could tell. How nice of them. The bastards! :-)
Still, my back is making me remember that mountain-biking and rollerblading aren’t exactly the best sports for it and so tomorrow, if I can get off work early enough, I think I’ll go for a swim instead.
My my, aren’t I busy?