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And suddenly it is like summer, if not technically over, is done in practical terms.

The air changed. The temperature dropped. The humidity dissipated. And the kids trudged back to school. Summer vacations for those lucky enough to have them are done and gone, memories relegated to Facebook photo albums and credit card statements.

Minor hockey is about to burst into bloom, with younger house league divisions having evaluation skates this weekend, the annual coaches meeting creeping up next week, and league drafts coming up.

With Chris officially retired from minor hockey and his brother enjoying life on the left coast, my only hands-on hockey now will be assisting with Coaches Dave and Mike and a team to be named later in MOHA’s atom red division. Planning for that may be discussed at dinner Friday night. Then again, beer.

Laura can’t wait for MOHA to start because she says my staring at the iPad obsessively waiting for news from the BCHL is making her crazy. The pre-season was difficult as exhibition game summaries were not posted and most games weren’t broadcast on the web. So the only available updates came from Twitter, if and when someone at the game actually posted an update, which wasn’t nearly often enough for my tastes. (My tastes prefer an update every 45 seconds or so.)

But that’s all history now. Every game from here on is available in pay-per-view video. Pad has been officially assigned to the team’s roster, he’s making friends and openly confesses to not missing Oakville in the least. Sadly this is confirmed by his billet family and others.

Yesterday the team had what must have felt like Christmas in September. The roster was finalized and then came the handing out of new equipment: gloves, home and away helmets, pants, sticks, etc.

Hockey players love swag.

On the home front, Chris has immersed himself in his music, as we knew he would, and is busy making plans for a trek to Toronto next week to catch Hollerado at the Danforth Music Hall. I said (innocently) “I thought you hated Hollerado?” He replied: “No dad. I hate the Lumineers. Try to keep up.”

Right.

So for now, that’s it.

Pad provided the weekend’s best imagery as he and his teammates did a little team-building exercise and hiked up a local hill near their Vancouver Island home. A hill more than 500 metres high it would be a mountain in these parts, but out there it’s a speed bump.

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Local man in the left of the frame in a white hat joins others in gratuitous photo on mountain where the wearing of shirts is apparently prohibited. Where’s Jennifer Aniston when you need her?

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For some local coverage of his team you can click here.

I have Google Alerts set up for him, his team and most every other Oakville-area player in the BCHL, the NCAA or the space program. And Laura says I’m obsessive. Ha.

No, I do it for you. Because I know you care.

You care, right?