Hockey Day in Lviv
The Ukrainian city of Lviv marked "Hockey Day" with maple syrup, donuts, and a friendly game between Canadian soldiers and Ukrainian athletes
“I’ve played hockey since the age of four, so it’s been a long time, a long time ago. We practiced many times in Norway to be ready to mix it with Ukrainian guys. They are stronger. They are good,” Sand said.
In Canada, hockey is a national sport. Many start playing the game in early childhood.
“I come from a big family and all my older brothers were playing hockey, so I started when being very young. I probably play during winter five to seven times a week,” Canadian soldier David Raymond said.
The match was at an ice rink in Lviv’s central square. Canadian soldiers and Ukrainian athletes played two periods, 10 minutes each. The Ukrainians won with a score of 9:6.
“It’s a universal game, the fastest game in the world. It develops all the physical and mental abilities because you have to think your moves through. It’s not as simple as it looks. The Canadian soldiers play hockey extremely well, it was hard to play with them,” a member of the Halytski Levy hockey team, Andriy Oberemskyi said.
After the game, the Canadian team treated everyone to maple syrup – an important element of the national cuisine.
“In small doses it’s good for the health, but like everything, you have to do it in moderation. It’s natural sugar. It’s made out of trees. So it’s sugar, but it’s natural sugar. We put it on pancakes, on French toast, on everything, on eggs, we use it a lot in Canada,” Commander of the “Unifier” operation Pierre Leroux said.
Hockey Day is organized in Lviv for the Canadian servicemen every year. It’s aimed to help soldiers feel at home and to introduce Ukrainians to Canadian culture.