Life On The Edge by Jennifer Comeaux
Synopsis: Nineteen-year-old Emily is new to pairs skating, but she and her partner Chris have a big dream–to be the first American team to win Olympic gold. Their young coach Sergei, who left Russia after a mysterious end to his skating career, believes they can break through and make history.
Emily and Chris are on track to be top contenders at the 2002 Winter Games. But when forbidden feelings spark between Emily and Sergei, broken trust and an unexpected enemy threaten to derail Emily’s dreams of gold.
My Figure Skating Addiction
Many people ask me how I became such a big fan of figure skating. There aren’t any ice rinks near my city, and I’ve only stepped on the ice once in my life! I grew up watching every skating event on TV, but it wasn’t until I attended my first competition that my fandom turned into an addiction.
My addiction started innocently enough. A friend from college, who is also a die-hard fan of the sport, happened to be in Cleveland during the 2000 U.S. National Championships, and she called me from Gund Arena, so excited about everything she saw. She said we absolutely had to go to Boston for the 2001 Championships. I'd always loved watching Nationals on TV, but I was thinking, who really goes to those events?
My friend brought me the ticket order form, and before I knew it, we'd plunked down a few hundred dollars for All-Event tickets. I flew into snow-covered Boston in January 2001 and had no idea what I was getting into, how many different places I'd travel to during the next eleven years for competitions.
The first thing that jumped out at me in Boston was how the skaters I'd watched for years on TV were now walking all around me at the hotel and sitting next to me on the bus to the arena. I was completely star struck! I didn't know where to look first.
The next thing that blew me away was how bright and sparkly the costumes were in person. Remember, this was before HDTV became popular. When the first group of skaters came out on the ice, I felt like I was in that scene in The Wizard of Oz, when Dorothy steps out of the black and white wrecked house and into colorful Munchkin Land. I couldn't believe how every sequin glinted under the bright lights of the Fleet Center.
Watching the competition live as opposed to at home, I could really feel the emotion of the skaters, and the energy of the crowd heightened the excitement even more. I enjoyed seeing skaters that never made the TV broadcast, especially the young up-and-comers. But the highlight was seeing my favorite skater of all-time, Michelle Kwan, compete. She owned the building. Nothing could compare to the frenzy she created when she stepped on the ice. Watching her skate was such a privilege.
After I returned home and told my sister all about my experience, I didn't have to do much convincing to get her on board for 2002 Nationals in Los Angeles. And from there, I couldn't stop – 2003 Dallas, 2004 Atlanta, 2005 Portland, the list goes on. Twelve straight Nationals and tickets purchased for 2013 in Omaha. Along the way, I also added in Skate America as an annual trip and threw in Worlds '09 and the 2010 Olympics (which was a dream come true!).
Attending skating events has allowed me to visit cities I never would've visited, and I've met some amazing skaters, skater families, and fans over the years. Being at competitions is so inspiring – it’s not only made me a bigger fan but it’s also given me lots of story ideas. So, I think my addiction is a healthy one! Do you have any healthy addictions?
I hope you all enjoyed Jennifer's Guest Post! It was very fun to have her on the blog today! Don't forget to check out the tour page so you can find the other stops on the tour!