Jan 24, 2022 14:31 UTC

As Chinese celebrate the country's hosting of the Winter Olympics, a 66-year-old Tianjin man has gone to great lengths to show his appreciation for ice hockey by turning his balcony into an ice rink and enjoying the sport with his family members.

According to Press TV, the recent COVID-19 outbreak in the northern Chinese city had locked down some buildings and playgrounds in the past few weeks, but it hasn't locked up people's enthusiasm for winter sports. 

A video of 66-year-old Zhang Baoqi playing ice hockey with his grandson on the balcony rink while the community was under a closed-off management system has wowed numerous citizens after his neighbor posted it on social media. 

The idea of making a balcony rink came to Zhang last year. He's determined to pass down his passion for winter sports to his grandson. 

"A boy needs bravery and tenacity. In ice hockey, sometimes you might get hit badly by another player, but you still need to stand up bravely and chase the puck. As long as I can reach the puck, I have to move forward. You must create a favorable situation even when it's impossible. I believe a boy must learn to play ice hockey," said Zhang. 

The transformation of the balcony took Zhang over 6 months. 

He made sure it was both sound-proof and water-proof so his leisure time wouldn't disturb his neighbors downstairs. 

Once the balcony's foundations were ready, the next step was ice, and that was much more difficult than he first imagined.

"Putting some milk in the water makes the ice more resilient and tougher to break, and you have to pour the water at noon, so the surface will be level when the water is frozen by midnight. At the beginning, I didn't know that and poured the water at midnight, and it froze to ice almost immediately, making the surface very uneven," said Zhang. 

There was a lot of trial and error in the experiment of course, but Zhang finally got it right in the end. 

He immediately called his daughter and grandson to surprise them. 

 ME

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