I grew up in Chicago, land of ice and snow and winds. (It's also the land of hot, muggy summers; cool, crisp falls; and lilacs and cafes and other stuff--but stay with me here.)
When you say "winter wonderland", surely the upper Midwest comes to mind, and with it, visions of sledding, ice skating, building igloos, snowball fights. To be sure, I did build igloos during recess at school, my buddies and I had snowball fights all the time, and I was hauled around on a sled by my parents during the Blizzard of '67, when we had to trek down the block to the little store to stock up on food.
But, in the midst of all that wintertime activity, I never did any ice skating.
So, when I went off to college at Northwestern University, not really knowing what I wanted to do there, I promptly took a few "fun" classes, things I had never done before...horseback riding, bowling, and ice skating. (I did also take German, Medieval French Literature, Slavic Literature, English Literature, and History, all with some vague idea of becoming a best-selling writer of historical romance novels.)
It was a short class, and I was dreadfully klutzy. But at least I learned the basics on how to move across the ice.
And, of course, during the 1984 Winter Olympics, Torvill and Dean became the skating sensation, and I discovered ice dancing. Ahhhhh. Not very much acrobatics (which are the Thing these days), but flawless, synchronized, romantic dancing.
From then on, I made sure to check out local ice skating rinks wherever I moved.
When we moved to Hippy Dippy Enclave in the Woods and I got a job at the IT department of Small Mountain University, it turned out that I was among like-minded people. A group of us--The Society of Geeky Gals--took to going to the local rink at 7 a.m. every other morning to get in our figure skating time. It was great. I got very firm & fit.
Then we became parents. I had dreams, I tell ya! Dreams! I was going to take the dotter hiking, and skating, and doing this and doing that.
Last year, I took OmegaDotter to the local ice skating rink for the first time. It was, alas, not to her taste. We rented skates for her, and we sat in the bleachers watching everyone skate for about 15 or 20 minutes, with the Dotter saying, "I don't waaaant to" multiple times. So I chalked it up to a failed experiment, resolved to wait a year, and we left.
Sunday, on a whim, I took her to the rink again. We rented skates for her. She didn't want to go on the ice, so I told her she should at least put on the skates and try walking in them for a while.
She put on the skates. I put on mine. She said, "I want to go there!", pointing to where everyone was skating. We went out on the ice. She clung to the wall. We crept forward a bit. She wanted to go back out. We went back out. A few minutes later, she wanted to go back in.
We did this multiple times.
By the end of the session, she made her way all the way around the rink (still holding onto the wall and onto me, but still...).
We're going again Wednesday night.