An extra layer under our shirts, a sweater, thick socks. I prepare a thermos of steaming hot chocolate, you grab the gloves, we go. Ice skating at Rockerfeller Center, the tree just lit, Saturday night.

I'm always scared to let go of the railing at first, you laugh at me and swoop around, wider and wider circles, I glide along with the kiddies, on the edge, safe.

Come on, scaredy-pants. Let go already.
I let go, grab at your hand as you go sailing by. We swerve, correct, stroke together; left, right, left, right. Around and around, numb ears and pounding in my head and air, life, crisp and flowing in my veins.

Check this out. you say.
You drop my hand, move ahead, then skate backwards to me. I grasp at your fingertips as they pass by. A little red blur of 5 year old boy aims for our legs, passing between. Caught unawares, you wobble, I wobble when you wobble, we both wobble, we are sliding on our wet butts across the rink in a wash of ice and melted floor.

Is it a night? I nod, you nod, we stagger to our feet breathless with laughter and call it a night. Later we sit on the ledge and watch the other skaters; sipping hot cocoa, blowing steam at each other (exhalation and heat), flushed and tired.

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