#GlobalNews: “Texas truck driver realizes dream of seeing a sport in each NHL enviornment “
Vanessa Guadiana laughs excitedly as she will get able to set foot into the Hockey Hall of Fame. It definitely isn’t her first time right here, however it’s maybe an important go to. It’s been greater than seven years within the making.
“Blown away! This is it — the NHL headquarters. I’m so excited to geek out and run around when you all leave,” Guadiana instructed Global News.
READ MORE: 36-year-old accountant turned emergency goalie helps Blackhawks beat Winnipeg
She would be the first to let you know she doesn’t match the typical description of a hockey fan: a small transport truck-driving girl from Mexico who’s now dwelling in Texas.
However, Guadiana lately marked a significant accomplishment after watching an NHL sport in all 31 arenas.
“I couldn’t believe it myself that I finished it,” she mentioned.
The journey started in 2011 when Guadiana mentioned she was nonetheless scrounging up money as a scholar to go to varied NHL arenas. She had already been to a number of video games in Dallas, the closest skilled hockey enviornment to her dwelling, and a handful of video games in Detroit, New York and Pittsburgh.
Although Guadiana mentioned her dad and mom supported her ardour for hockey, her prolonged household from Mexico had by no means heard of the game so it left her with few folks in her fast environment she might lean on to look at video games with.
RELATED: Edmonton hockey fan recounts journey of 30 NHL video games in 30 cities in 30 nights
“They don’t even know what hockey is,” Guadiana mentioned.
“When I went over [to Mexico] wearing hockey jerseys, I think they thought I was an alien.”
But her ardour stored rising and the mission hit full swing when she obtained her job as a truck driver.
“When I got the truck driving job, I thought, ‘Wait a minute, I can actually do this now.’ I’m going to get to Winnipeg and Montreal and all these cities I never thought I would hit up,” she mentioned.
“It just kept happening. I would go to three or four games a season and it just kept happening faster and faster.”
Over the years, Guadiana mentioned she would beg dispatchers to ship her to cities with NHL arenas she hadn’t visited but.
“When things worked out and I knew I was going to the game, I was so happy,” she mentioned.
“You could see me dancing, ‘Oh, I’m going to Ottawa! Oh, I’m going Toronto!”
Guadiana mentioned she began knocking off cities in no explicit order whereas considering it might in all probability take her greater than a decade to go to each enviornment.
But earlier this yr, with solely three cities left on her checklist, she mentioned she noticed her favorite group, the Vancouver Canucks, was going to be visiting the three remaining arenas.
“I saw the Canucks were going to be in (Las) Vegas, Chicago, St. Louis and I thought, ‘Oh my God, I could see the Canucks in my last three arenas,’” Guadiana mentioned.
Guadiana lastly achieved her dream on March 23 whereas watching the St. Louis Blues beat the Canucks 4-1. She introduced a vibrant orange signal to the sport that learn, “I did it! I saw a game at every NHL arena!”
“It was a shock. I cried because I’m a little baby,” she mentioned.
“It was all so surreal. I was in tears. I couldn’t believe it happened to me finally.”
Guadiana mentioned she then requested her dispatcher to ship her to Toronto to drop off some cargo and the place she might go to the Hockey Hall of Fame because the icing on the cake and contact the Stanley Cup for the primary time.
“That’s just impressive to me. That’s someone that obviously loves hockey,” Hockey Hall of Fame spokesperson Kelly Masse mentioned.
“[She] is obviously a devoted hockey fan and that what we’re here for, really.”
Guadiana admitted being on the centre of the hockey universe feels so much totally different after lastly undertaking her purpose. But she additionally mentioned there’s a lingering feeling that’s bittersweet.
“Part of me is so sad that it’s over. Now I have nothing to look forward to until Seattle comes around, or I may start visiting minor teams,” Guadiana mentioned.
© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.
Note: “Previously Published on: 2018-04-19 09:24:53, as ‘Texas truck driver realizes dream of seeing a sport in each NHL enviornment