Flynn and Keiko have told me off and on about Olivia’s and Sophia’s skating and I have seen the occasional picture and video of their skating in Japan. So when Flynn mentioned that that the girls were competing in Chilliwack I said that I wanted to come and watch. Susan was in Palm Springs and I was on my own so it seemed like a great time to go. They were on the ice on Friday and Saturday, the 18th and 19th of October, so Flynn arranged a hotel room for us so we could be in Chilliwack for the competition on Friday and be back at the arena early on Saturday.

Olivia in the stands watching her sister, Sophia, on the ice.

It turned out to be a wonderful and exciting two days and I was not prepared for what I saw. My two little granddaughters are on their way to being real professionals. I was not prepared for the level of skill and talent that they exhibited and how seriously they approached this sport.  I have a whole new perspective on ice skating.

Keiko has done a wonderful job with the girls and having them in this activity has been a lot of work for her but the benefits are plain to see: confidence, dedication, skill, and real pride in what they can do. Well done, Keiko!

Flynn and Sophia playing around before she went out on the ice for her skating competition.

Olivia is wondering why her Daddy has a silly Sony when he could have a capable Canon?

Sophia is nine years old and she skates like a champion.

During the warm up before the competition Sophia wore a sweater. That is when I realized I was watching something special.

So all I have to do is lift my foot behind me and reach over my shoulder to touch my shoe?  Yea, right!  Like I would survive that!

And there is Sophia on the podium. On the blue ribbon is a Gold Medal! Well done!

I can’t say which of us is the most proud, Sophia or me. I had trouble taking this picture for the tears in my eyes.

And that was the end of competition on Friday. To celebrate Flynn and Keiko took us out for a very nice dinner where we had a wonderful time. Olivia was interested in the Marr family history and we got into a great discussion about King George and the War of the Revolution and how she is entitled by Royal Charter to use the title “UEL”. We had to leave long before that conversation was over. But it will continue another time, I am sure.

Flynn and I let the girls try our cameras and they took pictures of everything around us. I was pleasantly surprised at what a good eye for composition and subject matter they both had. Maybe we will have more Marr photographers in the future?


We had to wait a few minutes for a table at the restaurant. From left to right, my son Flynn, Olivia, Sophia and the girls mother Keiko.

Sophia took this picture of her father. It’s a great picture but I do worry about this man flying a plane with passengers in it!

Olivia took this picture of the two Flynns and Sophia. Both pictures are a little blurry but these are heavy cameras for little girls.

Saturday morning we were back at the rink for Olivia’s Ice Dance competition at 8:15. I was again amazed at the grace and beauty of these kids out on that ice. The figures were simple but they were beautifully done with a grace and elegance you don’t usually see in children of this age.

The whole competition was run like an Olympic Event with a panel of judges. The performers had to begin and end before the judges. There was a reserved area where they sat to await their scores and for the winners there was a podium where proud parents, and grandparents, could take pictures. When these kids finally do get to the Olympics, it will all be “old hat” for them. They will have done it so often before they will be cool and collected. Now that is good training!

Olivia’s first competition was in Pairs Ice Dance and it was a joy to watch.  Not bad for eleven years old!

Proud gold medalists on the Podium.

Olivia’s Gold Medal!

And that was my time in Chilliwack. Olivia had another competition in the afternoon but I could not stay. That night I was taking Kathleen and Colin with Sarah to the opera to see La Traviata. I was to meet them at about 4:30 and that left me no time at all. So, although my weekend was far from over, I had to leave the girls before they were finished. However, they compete again in November, in Chilliwack again, and I would not miss it for the world.