1.23.2009

Ice Skating on the National Mall...

Ice Skating on The National Mall

the brutally cold weather does have its benefits
thick sheets of ice for skating can be one benefit
firm frozen mud-less trails for mountain biking can be an another

this morning before work today I attached my skates to the outside of my pack and took an extended ride into work
not a long ride
really not much more than the Inaugural Parade route in reverse
a ride that passed my office and kept going

got to The Capital Reflecting Pool and stepped onto the ice
it was like a cartoon... long audible cracks on the ices as I moved about
confidence was low... was not on the ice long enough to even warm up
there was little opportunity to warm up due to my apprehension on the ice

the zamboni-less surface was littered with all sorts of items from the inaugural events just days prior

I had wanted to send the sea gulls flying... but feared that karmic retribution would be immediate and cold

just as I was about to get off the ice officer friendly asked me to step off the ice
she was pleasant enough... no waving of the finger... no lecturing
she did not tazer me nor did she hit me with her night stick
just a friendly request to step off the ice

after the Capital I headed over to the Lincoln Memorial
the ice here seemed to be in better shape
my confidence was already shattered
although my time on the ice lacked the audible cracking with the dramatic white fissures growing on the ice I still moved about tentatively

it was still vague in my mind if this action is in fact permissable
I passed a number of Park Service employees with the skates dangling from my pack
there was nothing covert about my actions
the image with this previous post implies that ice skating on the reflecting pool was once a popular accepted activity

the tourists around the area were inspired by my time on the ice
some young ladies from Peru followed me on the ice
one of which snapped some shots for me
after the skates were off and I was on my bike I saw groups of people on the ice which made me feel I should have been more bold

just as well... it was all in good fun
I was pleased it happened without officer friendly putting me in the penalty box
not sure of what the rules of such things are in this day and age
also pleased that I did not find a thin spot that revealed the thickness of the ice and the depth of the water
glad I did it
too bad it warmed up so much today... because I would like to do it again

8 comments:

Phil said...

You Crazy Man!.... No I really Just with I had thought of if first...

Anna said...

I'm glad to see you take the time to enjoy life.

gwadzilla said...

anna.... on your commute... how does the ice look?

well... snow covered and sketchy today
but before that
were their skaters on the canal?

yes

this skate on the mall is a metaphor for taking the opportunities in life when they are made available to you

Anna said...

Yeah, there were actually a lot of people out playing ice hockey(I'll send photos). I felt like I was living in a story book! It was beautiful ...except for those sketchy patches of black ice.

This is a rest week, but maybe you, me and Steve could all head out on the C&O next week after work?

the original big ring said...

haaa - that's awesome!

Sean said...

Joel here is an article on the C&O:

http://www.connectionnewspapers.com/article.asp?article=324483&paper=70&cat=104

Not that I think either is too safe. At least the Reflecting pool is pretty shallow, just a couple of feet. The Canal was historically 6' deep, but is probably 3' to 4' deep nowadays. Just stay of the Potomac.

Sean said...

should have said "stay off the Potomac"

gwadzilla said...

thanks Sean... I will check out that article and stay off the Potomac... unless I feel like showing off my "walking on water" trick