Evening of April 26, 2011:
Would love to send some pictures, but they’re difficult to upload with our current internet access restrictions. But, as Ross did an interview with Lynn Rutherford of Ice Network yesterday, you can see some here.
Sunday night practice was only Ross, Ricky and Patrick Chan. It went well. The rink has seats in jawbreaker colors – to me it looks like a gum ball machine, but they call it “Lego Land.” At least it makes it look more full. In the limited time they had re-setting up the competition in Moscow, they have still managed to sell 80% of the tickets, and that includes the preliminary rounds.
Monday, Ray and I got up early to sightsee. We took the subway four stops to Red Square and The Kremlin. We saw the arsenal, the diamond exhibition, three of the four cathedrals, the crowns of Russia, some Faberge eggs (including the 1908 model that showed the five cameos of the last Romanov children) and the Easter Monday service with the “big guy,” the head of the Russian Orthodox Church. It was a mob scene, and that guy had serious security.
Of course, no sightseeing trip would be complete without running into some fellow Skating Club of Boston members. We were able to spot Mark and Tammy Gambill in the mob, and the four of us toured the icon of Moscow, St. Basils Cathedral. Then we ran into the Frielings, here for Brooke and Lionels ice dance (Israel). Small world!
We were glad Ross and Ricky did not join us for this extravaganza, as as our legs ached from five hours walk ing on cobblestones! Practice for Ross on Monday night was not perfect, with the continuing adjustment to the time difference, but he went onto have a good night’s sleep.
On Tuesday, we watched the ladies qualifying, and were able to cheer for Joshi Helgesson from Sweden, who has trained in Boston along with her sister Victoria.
Joshi finished second in the qualifying with a good skate, so she moves on.
Team USA men practiced together again mid-afternoon on Tuesday, along with the Canadians and Nan Song of China. It went very well. Then, the two rookies, Ross and Ricky, were scheduled to interview with Lynn Rutherford from Ice Network. Ray and I went for dinner to our favorite spot, the Bye Bye Cafe,which features food from Uzbekistan. Very good and less expensive than most.
So on to the draw: It seems to maybe be based on ISU points or something. Ricky skates third, Ross is sixth, and Ryan is thirteenth. So, the lucky lads had first practice this morning at 7am and skate in the first warm-up for joy… Hopefully they will all live to see another day. Practice was good and rink security has now been stepped up with police dogs. In the opening ceremony today, Vice President Vladimir Putin (who seems to be the man in charge) is scheduled to show up for the portion that will be honoring Japan. And the Japanese media is here en masse because of the amazing Japanese Team.
So, time to get it together and get to the rink. Wish everyone luck!
– Gloria Miner
(To read the first post in the series, please click here.)