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    Memory about Pasha’s childhood from her mom

                                    Part 4

We came to the entrance of the ice hall. The security clerk looked at us through the window of her cabin. After having seen our poor clothing, she told us that the hall is "forbidden for strangers." Even though a hole in a window at the side wall was little, Oksana still persisted in wanting to take a glimpse inside. Since all the holes were higher than she could reach to see into, I had to lift her. She screamed in amazement, "Wow, Mama! They are flying in there on their boots! " I was bewildered by Oksana's passion, so I summoned all my courage to go back to the security lady. Again I asked her to let us in. Finally she couldn't resist Oksana's pleas, and we were allowed to enter. Once inside, we became as quiet as possible. We rooted ourselves in a corner. I could see that Oksana's eyes were lit with fire. After a while, she said, "Me, too. I want it, too. Mama, please. Ask the woman to let me have a try. Please. Just for a little!"

She was of medium height, scanty, just in the beginning of her twenties, pretty with her brown hair, dressed in a brown sports-suit and a neat vest.

The woman that Oksana was referring to was a coach. The coach had already noticed us, but she said nothing to us. After an hour, we went up to her. "Could you help us in taking part in your group, please?" I asked. "Sorry, its not the right time now," she answered. "The enlistment is already over. The next one will be in half a year." "Let us have just one try," I asked, "Only for a bit?" The coach asked me, "How can I do that without any permission? No, sorry. Don't take my time, please!" As we then started to leave, I heard Oksana weeping. She was trying to gulp the tears in secret. After the training, the coach saw the kids off and turned to us. "Please help us," I pleaded. To Oksana she asked, "How old are you?" My Oksana replied, "Four." "You see," she said; "You'll have to grow for at least a year. We don't enlist girls under five." "No, no. I can't wait," said Oksana. "Please do take me!". "Do you have a pair of skating boots?" was her next question. Oksana didn't, "But we'll get some," she said. We had to do that first before the coach would talk again. I asked if we could borrow some boots at the rink, but the woman told me, "No. These are only for our skaters."

    Copyright Lüdmila Grishuk/Rohbeck

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