Last year, whilst touring in Canada, I saw a documentary film on TV about a father and son driving across the country from Nova Scotia to Vancouver. The object of the journey was to see Canada play hockey in the winter Olympics and along the way they attended various games and met hockey legends and heros. This gave me the idea of doing something along those lines with one of my sons Stefan, and I have just had the most wonderful road trip with him across that great land. We both share a great love of Ice Hockey (Hockey if you live in N.America) and in the last week have been to games in Calgary, Vancouver and Toronto.
We also had the privilege of attending morning practice sessions with the Vancouver Canucks, St Louis Blues, Toronto Maple Leafs and the Pittsburgh Penguins. Hockey is a huge part of the heritage and history of Canada and runs very deep. It invokes enormous passion amongst those who follow the game which for me is the most exciting spectator sport in the world. Stefan plays the game and is doing very well, playing in the BNL league for the Cardiff Devils. Sadly a recent injury caused his ACL to become detached and he is on a long waiting list for an operation right now, so this trip has gone some way to lifting his spirits. More than that though, he has seen the game being played at its highest level and there is no finer sight. Passion and huge integrity are the cornerstones of the game and to share moments with him within that framework has been a very special thing for a father and son from Wales. And of course to spend such precious time with any of your children when they reach the age of nineteen can only be a blessing.
I just said goodbye to him at Toronto airport and he will fly home and I’m flying back to Vancouver to start a five week tour here. Saying ‘au revoir’ for a while was a tough moment but only because the rest of the journey had been so wonderful, and I’m not just talking about the last six days. I’m so proud to be his Dad, and the same goes for our other two wonderful children. I have been so blessed to be able to spend this past week on the road with ‘my boy’.