There was an air of excitement as we arrived at The Winter Lodge in Palo Alto. The rink is a lovely indoor-outdoor setting surrounded by trees. I have only skated twice in my life but, being the sporty type, I decided to go for it. Fortunately, a gentleman took my arm and helped me around the rink. With his support, I gained confidence. I looked up from the ice and gasped. What a sight to behold! I felt as if I had stepped back in time. How wonderful everyone looked. Each skating costume was unique. There were many different Victorian periods represented: 1830s dresses, 1860s hoop skirts, bustle gowns, and trim 1890s ensembles. What a delight for the eyes. The gentlemen were all so handsome in their formal coats.


The music being played for us was traditional Victorian dance music for waltzes, mazurkas, shottishes and polkas. Looking around, I realized that some of our skaters were very good, indeed. Out in the middle of the rink, a small group was performing Sir Roger de Coverly. Bravo!


Of course, there were other skaters like me with little skill but, a lot of heart. We laughed and struggled as more accomplished performers glided by. We took periodic breaks and enjoyed the hot cider, tea and cookies prepared by Victoria and Richard Lawrence. It was such a fun day; we didn't want it to end.

~~ Christine James


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