“Go, Grandma, Go!” – Fan Power

Speedskating on the world famous outdoor rink in Davos, Switzerland

Speedskating on the world famous outdoor rink in Davos, Switzerland

Coming out of a difficult curve I heard his three-year-old voice urging me on: “Go, Grandma, go!” It gave me that extra umph of energy heading into the last lap of the race. Fan power. There weren’t many fans in the stands Sunday afternoon for the Schaffhausen Short-Track Club competition. We’re a small club with not quite 20 members, almost half of us kids or beginners, I one of the newest. The stands are cold; it takes a dedicated family member to sit there when it’s nicer outside.
Our coach encouraged us to return to the locker-room between heats so we’d keep warm. But none of us wanted to miss the races of our fellow club members. We cheered each one on, especially the slower ones. It was great fun. We’ve got some first class club members and to watch them fight for first place was exhilarating. We agonized with the girl that skated a great race to fall just before the win. I fell once too, and skated the last lap alone – the important thing was to finish the race. Each time I skated by the team stand, I heard our coach’s voice, “You’re doing well, Marianne – keep going!” It was a vocal energy drink. I crossed the finish line raising my arms in triumph. I’d done it!
The best part of the day for me was after the competition, when I went to greet my family in the stands. Each one of them had a big smile, from the three-year-old grandsons, to their parents, my husband and his sister. “We’re so proud of you!” they said. I don’t think I could have been happier if I’d won a gold medal. I’d come in almost last, being so new to the sport, but they acted as if I’d been first.
Six weeks ago I heard about the short-track club in Schaffhausen. Growing up in northwestern Canada, I’d been on skates since a child. I love to skate, love the speed and the rush. I’m proof that 56 is not too old to join a sports club for the first time in your life. And not too old to learn firsthand how important even the youngest fan is to morale!

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2 Responses to “Go, Grandma, Go!” – Fan Power

  1. Valerie says:

    Love it! 56 is young!

  2. Helen says:

    You can be sure that your sisters would be cheering just as loudly, and we are so proud of you joining the club. I am sure you are improving all the time now with coaching!

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