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A few days back, I arrived late at home from work. My mom usually welcomes me warmly as soon as I entered the house, but then on that day, I was already able to reach my brother’s room when my mom greeted me. She and my brother were watching figure skating competition in 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics on TV. They said they were enjoying the performances that when I entered my room, I immediately turned on the TV and watched. After a few minutes, I found myself just staring on the screen, amazed by how graceful the skaters were. Their performances had been all awesome, even though some committed a few errors. They applied the basic principle of ‘standing up when you fall down,’ which made me look up to them in awe.

Personally, I do not know how to skate. I have not tried, actually. I remember I was in 4th year college back then when my classmates invited me to skate with them in Mall of Asia, Pasay City. I knew in myself that I would love to try even just once, but then my parents asked me if I can possibly handle it since I had poor balance (prone to injuries) that made me think twice, and not to forget that Pasay is 3 hours away from the place where I live so I ended up not really coming. Despite these, I am sure one day in the future I will try this sport. Who knows, I may be as talented as Michael Martinez? The very idea made me smile.

Michael Martinez is the first Filipino skater to compete in Winter Olympics, ever. He must be talented, I tell myself. Since I was not able to watch the skating-men’s division from the beginning days back, I watched Michael’s performance on the internet instead. He was extremely good! It was rare to see a Filipino in Olympics, which made me so proud. He ended up finishing 19th in the competition. This young skater became known because of his hard work. I did not quite expect that one day I will see him in person. I just did, last Tuesday, February 25.

My February 25 had been ordinary until around 8 in the evening. I was looking forward for a nice dinner with friends in the new building in Megamall, which they called Mega D. After work, Kris, Nikka, John, and I went to Megamall to check out the place. We first went to all floors and on the 5th floor we saw the new ice skating rink. We watched the skaters for a while, and on that very moment I imagined myself skating, having a wonderful time. The art of skating looked so easy, yet so complicated and required dedication. We left the floor agreeing that we will try it someday, which thrilled me.

We got hungry after a few minutes and finally decided to eat at Abe. Upon entering the restaurant, we noticed that there were considerably lots of people waiting outside. We really did not know why until we saw Michael, about to leave the premises. Instinct got into us; we immediately wanted a picture with the figure skater. John got his tablet ready at once. We were lucky that his mom was so nice—she allowed us to have a photo with his son. I am proud to share the photo above because he is my idol and an inspiration to young skaters. I could not believe how chance brought us to Abe where he was at that time. It was memorable and truly a wonderful moment to have met him in person. As for my first skating experience, it was decided yesterday that it will push through this coming March with my friends. Fingers crossed–I hope it does not get cancelled! (02.28.2014)

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