2020 has mixed reviews. Many are up in arms with 2020 and still have plenty of rotten tomatoes to toss. As a global community we experienced uncertainty, panic, isolation, loss, anger, confusion, and learned new ways to love.
This great sabbatical had many of us unearthing old or new hobbies.
Meet Adele McDonald. She is one of the many who invested this gift of time we have been given by the pandemic through an impulse buy. Adele purchased skates in February—ah sweet, sweet pre-covid days. Then the world seemed to stop spinning in March and Adele shortly forgot about the skates with all that came with quarantine.
But in May after the world started to understand a new normal and toilet paper started to reappear on the shelves, spring sprung and Adele decided it was time to unbox her skates. She saw these skates as a way to escape the walls of her apartment.
Adele admits: “I spent a couple weeks falling … in a friends’ tiled courtyard before I happened to walk by Stroud playground Crown Heights, Brooklyn NY. I feel like everyone who roller skates pays 10x more attention to concrete than they ever did before, so I was constantly on the prowl for good skate spots and as soon as I saw those smooth basketball courts … it was love at first sight.”
Adele was consistent, visiting this spot daily allowed her not only to practice her newfound passion but also to connect with other skaters. Adele met many skaters who missed the skate rink disco experience, so she and a couple friends decided to create their own right there at the park. A date was picked, and theme were picked, lights were hung around the park and the fun began. “That first disco night has to be my favorite night of 2020, (admittedly a low bar)” Adele says. That first night was a success and soon it became a weekly thing. To spread the word more easily Adele created the @parkplaceskatersInstagram. The page grew to over 600 followers in a short period of time. Since then 16 Roller Disco nights were held and this event got Adele and the Park Place Skaters featured in The Cut!
Adele didn’t allow the darkness that came with Isolation to steal her joy. Adele dove into learning something new. “I’m still pretty new to skating, but it’s been an overwhelming positive experience! Getting outside and wiping out in front of strangers is liberating. It’s good for the ego.”
Those words speak so much wisdom. It’s ok to fall, get bruised, and even have a scrape or two when you start something new. It’s part of the process. In the words of Aaliyah, the trick is to “dust yourself off and try again.” Don’t stay down or throw in the towel. Keep going.
When asked what skating has done for her Adele says: “Lockdown in New York was a pretty dark time for a lot of people, myself included. I’m a pretty over the top extrovert and being isolated for so long was really hard. Skating really turned things around for me when I started getting out and spending time with people (masked! at a distance!) and making new friends at the skate park. It’s only been a few short months, but I know these people are going to be in my life forever & I love it!”
Adele definitely made some tasty lemonade with the lemons that 2020 delivered at her door. What will you do with yours?