Why did Mr. Husky disappear on me without a word? Perhaps he got into an accident? Maybe he was confused or overwhelmed? Or did he lose his phone? But then, he would’ve tried anything he could to reach me if he indeed had the desire to see me. Millions of ideas shot through my mind, interrupting the normal operation of my neurons.The disappointment of his flaking out on our Wednesday night-out followed me through this morning.
Not allowing myself to dwell on this mysterious case, I decided to practice skating near Shawn’s Skate Shop. Since Shawn was out of town, I was greeted by Gabriel, Shawn’s apprentice instead. I had a sweet conversation with Gab as he was showing me some essential braking techniques for about an hour. Right then came this big black customer firing words thousand miles an hour. I finally caught his name, well, let’s call him…Auss. After learning about my story, Auss asked in an enthusiastic and gentle manner “may I join you for a skate?”
I surely wouldn’t miss any chance to skate and learn from others. We left our belongings at the shop and promised Gab to be back by 6pm, so that he could close the shop and rock with us. As soon as we hit the road, Auss swirled around into crazy figure skating spins. He patiently tried his best to help me overcome the fear of sliding downhill in full speed. We practiced at the skate park where I had my first brutal wipeout landing on my left thigh. I stood right back up and laughed it off (like always). Time flew when fun took charge. It was 10 minutes to 6 when we finally had the incentive to peek at the watch. With my prudent amateurish skill, there’s simply no way we could’ve made it back to the store in time. On the spur of the moment, Auss looked at me and said seriously,”you are going to hold onto my shoulders, we are going to skate through traffic. Just bend your knees and slide along with me. Do not let go okay.”
“Skate through traffic? Like alongside the cars that are going 60Km/hour?”I questioned with immense excitement. Without further ado, I gripped onto his brawny shoulders and he accelerated in full throttle! For some reason, I had not a doubt in this strangers. The comfort and thrill left me no room for fear. Holy Cow! This man is an absolute street bastard, but I loved it! We slalomed through the raging crowd of cars and glided downhill (none of us had brakes on). Ha! who cares about traffic lights! “Hell! Yessss!” I screamed for victory! I roared for the adrenaline rush!
Still barreling down the slope with the last bits of potential energy hoarded from the top, we were right around the corner across from the shop when I suddenly got this instinct to skid to my left while Auss had meant to skate forward all along. Since my three-wheel skates created less friction in comparison to his 4 wheelers, my sharp and unexpected left turn cut right in front of him, and I looked up only to find myself running into a tree 2 inches short! I The world was all about the matter of split second. My brain wasn’t reacting in time to fire flight and fight signal to activate my defensive nervous system; I recall trying to let go of his hand so that he wouldn’t fall with me. But all I could sense at that very split second before I was able to react was being lifted up and getting thrown off away from the tree. My body rolled on the ground, but I was safe and whole. Whereas Auss, when I looked back at him, his left arm was streaming in blood. His skin was scarped off from gliding against the bumpy ground when he exerted force to push me away from the tree.
Instead of examining his own abrasion in the wake of the brutal fall, he ran up to me and checked on my almost imperceptible scrapes. I felt sorry for his injury and thanked him for saving my life. We both shared this mutual smile in agreement of this heroic act. It’s the cutest accident ever. He later complimented my courage to skating with him like a mad woman without calling him crazy or idiotic as most women with whom he had skated would. Bewildered ,I jumped up and down,”why would they feel that way? It was super exciting! I didn’t know why anyone should be scared when they are holding onto your back.” The truth was, I had immediately developed 100% confidence and trust in this strangers the first minute I met him. I was certain that in times of danger, he would stake his life to save me despite of the novelty of this burgeoning friendship of an hour. “This is nothing. I’d rather take all the pain than seeing a girl gets the minimal injuries. That would hurt me more than any physical pain,” remarked lovely Auss with his manly tone,”this is the scar of friendship.”
The thunderstorm started to rage as Gab was ready to close the store. Unfortunately, with such finicky weather, we had to call it a day. Auss, who is currently doing a social experiment of “homelessness by choice”, skated with me through rain and shine back to a Bubble Tea place by my house where I offered him a cup of tea. Our friendship grew along with every little story we shared with each other. We ended the night by skating to the top of the hill admiring the grand city of Calgary, and mischievously flashing red and white flashlights into people’s houses claiming to be the cops (well, then we were actually stopped by some loving cops who asked if we were catching Pokemons.)
Being in my skates for over 10 hours today, I am afraid I might have to slack off a bit tomorrow…