It is even less often when those words are written by said daughter online the next day.
That is why as special as last Saturday was to Rachel,it might have been more special to me.
|Rachel with Adam Larsson
That is what Rachel had last Saturday night in Hershey,Pennsylvania and it had nothing to do with the Halloween spectacular at neighboring Hershey Park.
Rachel wanted the New Jersey Devils theme for birthday number sixteen.
From cake to gifts,she wanted Devils items (She is wearing one of her gifts-an Adam Henrique jersey) so I tried to accommodate her wishes.
One of her gifts was to include her in my annual trip to Hershey to scout the Albany Devils and considering the time,I ordered better seats than I usually do as I tried to get as close to the ice as I could.
She was excited,but even more when I explained that the NHL lockout had one small upside-her three favorite players were all going to be assigned to Albany for the duration of the lockout-Adam Henrique,Adam Larsson and Jacob Josefson.
That meant that as disappointed as she was in the lockout,she was rooting for it to continue until she could go to the game (She says it can end now) and with luck meet her players.
The Saturday start was good news for me.
I only autograph the Devils as many games are on work nights and I despise cold weather,so drawing a Devils visit very early or very late in the season always brings a smile to the face of the writer.
For example,the other Albany visit is December 29th-BRRRR....
If you recall,I was able to get some players last season at the hotel in my last trip to see the team,so we were hoping to do that again.
Our friend Tyler Chupak was along to help with graphing in his first hockey excursion ever,so we hoped to make him a hockey (and preferably a Devils) fan,despite his Sidney Crosby jersey,so arriving at the hotel,we saw my friend Mark Bailey.
Mark had guided me along last season in Hershey and he was kind enough to do so again.
|Adam Henrique with Rachel!
However,all the guys were very nice and signed what I had-All of the NHL players signed,Adam Henrique,Adam Larsson,Jacob Josefson,Mattias Tedenby along with former Senator Bobby Butler and Jay Leach,the Devils captain and husband of our favorite NHL Network anchor Kathryn Tappen.
|Rachel with Jacob Josefson
Tyler was also able to help with getting items signed as it was Tyler that tracked down Jay Leach to sign his card (Leach was so far ahead,I had no chance of catching him) and Rachel's best friend Courtney's picture of Jacob Josefson signed and personalized to her....
As the players boarded the bus to the arena,we had some time to kill,so we ate at the sports restaurant in the hotel-the Bears Den.
As we wound our way through the hotel to get there,Rachel gave me a hug and said "this is the best day of my life and and you are the best daddy in the world".
You cannot buy that,my friends.
That,as the MasterCard commercial says, is priceless....
Back later or soon with my look at the Albany Devils on the ice and their 3-0 loss to Hershey.
Photo Credits:Tyler Chupak