The Suitcase Lady


January 10, 2017, 9:44 pm

I’ve noticed an uptick in news from Canada lately, perhaps because Americans are suddenly more aware that a nice country exists above us. Personally, I like the fact that if I left my house after breakfast, I could drive to Canada for dinner. It’s a comforting thought that good neighbors are nearby.

A hot, or perhaps I should say cold, news item from Canada recently reported about a man and his Zamboni. Jesse Myshak of Alberta purchased a Zamboni to care for his backyard rink. The ice surfacing machine needed some repairs so he worked on it at his shop over a mile from his residence. When the work was completed, he decided to drive it home which elicited some good natured ribbing from the guys at his shop. They suggested he drive it to Tim Hortons, that most iconic of Canadian institutions. And that is exactly what he did, down the city streets at a slow crawl to the drive in window where he got a hot chocolate. The lady in front of him even paid for his drink. His short jaunt produced much laughter and an outpouring of Canadian pride from his townspeople.

The previous year, three other Canadian guys made Zamboni news. They wanted to have glassy, manicured ice for their neighborhood rink but could not afford the six figure price of a genuine Zamboni. So they got together in a garage one afternoon, started tinkering around and built their own.

One of the team explains, “It’s built mostly out of PVC piping, and there’s a big tank that goes on the back of a side-by-side, and some valves and other stuff from the local hardware store.” A spout sprays warm water on the ice and a large beach towel attached to a mechanical arm buffs the ice. Their contraption is a resounding success.

Americans aren’t the only ones with ingenuity.