Last year I was getting outside more than I had ever done. During the darkness of Melbourne’s lockdowns, we were first allowed out an hour a day for exercise, and then two. I genuinely loved the fresh air and movement – because there was nowhere else I could be.
I kept seeing videos of women rollerskating. Black women; fat women; queer women; women wearing hijabs, a woman using a mobility aid. Skating seemed to be for everyone!
They were skating in unused car parks and on quiet roads, with sunset filters and retro soundtracks. I could do that, I thought!
And then, when a friend bought skates that looked like watermelons on wheels (coral and green), I searched for some too.
There seemed to be a rollerskate shortage – everywhere was sold out! After hours of middle of the night searching for rollerskates (which beats doom scrolling in a global pandemic) I finally found a near new pair in my size on Facebook marketplace for $60. If I didn’t stick with this hobby, at least I didn’t pay a heap, I thought. I ordered a helmet and padding even before the skates arrived. My mint green skates with pink laces arrived, and I couldn’t wait to put them on.
When my skates arrived, we were still limited to two hours out of the house, in a five km zone. And so I could only venture to a barbecue area – which was enough for me. I put them on, and I gave it a go. It was quite scary being on eight wheels off the ground. I held onto a pole a lot.
When I did move, I was Bambi! I was so …….