After over a year of planning, today is the day the team finally convened for the trip to Canada. Team members from all over the country made their way to Boston, one by one gathering at Stephanie’s at Gate B25 of Logan airport. Some came the day before to take in some Boston flavor, while our Pacific Time folks had red eyes or virtual red eye flights. Over beers and burgers, teammates introduced themselves, cracked jokes, and let the excitement of what is to come over the next two weeks sink in.
Once all twenty players were accounted for, captain Steve McKee addressed the gang and laid out the plan for the next two weeks. This tour is about camaraderie, fellowship, sportsmanship, and being good ambassadors for the sport. We're going to curl, and hopefully win, but definitely have a good time and make some new friends. Steven O’Connor fired up folks by showing off the Chairmen’s Cup, which is really a beauty to see up close.
This tour isn’t just playing games to win a cup. It’s about sharing in the spirit of curling with our neighbors to the north. Part of the schedule involves nightly banquets and dinners, and maybe even a ceilidh or kitchen party if we’re lucky. Our entertainment chairs, Tom and Darryl have put together a program of the most exceptional curling jokes and songs to impress our hosts at each club. We know we’re on to something after our first practice number got an applause from a woman who took a break from her phone call at the bar. There may be kazoos and harmonicas involved.
After an hour delay in the coldest terminal ever (it was 33º outside and the terminal was under construction) we finally boarded our prop plane for the short jump to Halifax. Despite the bumpy landing, we arrived safely to find our Canadian counterparts waiting for us at the arrival gate in a swanky new bus. Our driver did an excellent job of Tetris getting all our bags in the back and then getting us safely through the snow to our hotel in Halifax for the next two nights.
Tomorrow will be a bit of sight seeing, some practice, and one draw featuring four teams at 5:30 pm EST. The draws and scores will be on Bonspieler.com but note that the times are estimates and could change.
Team Member Charlie Maring has put together a great intro tour book. You might have already seen much of it elsewhere on the site, but here is the whole book available for your viewing pleasure.
We'll be tracking the matches and scores online at bonspieler.com/canamcup.
If you're not familiar with Bonspieler, it's a bonspiel game tracking website developed by the tech folks in the San Francisco Bay Area Curling Club. If you're inclined, toss them a little tip to thank them for this service and help them open the first dedicated ice curling center in California!