I daresay the next few posts will be devoted to our escapades of this past weekend, since it was pretty busy, so without further ado…
The kids were supposed to be at Mohawk College by 5:30 to be ready for the opening procession to get underway at 6. Now, this IS karate time we’re talking about here, which is totally unrelated to the real world. This means things really get going at least a half hour after the scheduled start, despite the inclusion of the word “sharp” on everything.
This meant I took their stuff with me to work, left it in the van, and they walked over to meet me at my bus parking spot so we could leave as soon as I parked. That part worked well, and we headed to McDonalds for a quick and non-nutritious dinner before dashing off to the college. Where we found seats and sat and waited. And waited. A bit after 6 all competitors were called out to line up for the procession. And we waited some more. We saw Walter Gretzky roaming around, heading for the head table to talk with the Very Important People up there. I was sitting with two other moms and we were just chatting about stuff moms chat about when suddenly we realized Mr Gretzky was standing right there in front of us, singing. Serenading us. Us. Specifically us. I have no idea why, or even what he was singing, I was so taken aback by his sudden appearance and his bursting into song. He finished his song and proceeded to tell us some stories. He is a charming man, beloved by all of Brantford, and I can certainly see why. To leap ahead – after the opening ceremonies, he was upstairs signing autographs and posing for photos with anyone who asked. My kids got autographs and came galloping down to show me. I went back up with them with the camera, and Walter obligingly posed for photos. He then had to check the photo to ensure it met his standards, and if it didn’t, he insisted another one be taken. And he seems to have a thing about feet. Do not even think about cutting feet out of a photo you take with him. He simply won’t have it. Cut out the feet and you will be taking the photo again. I had taken one of him with the kids, and he asked me what relationship they were to me. On hearing they were mine, he wandered off in search of some random bystander to take my camera to get a photo of all of us together. The unwitting bystander made the mistake of cutting our feet off. The second photo included feet.
I just have to say, Walter is a charming and delightful man, loved by everyone who encounters him. He is patient, but demanding (don’t forget the feet!), and will take as much time as necessary to make his fans happy.
More on the tournament later, I need to cook dinner.