Then imagine that the seats are hard plastic things that are really close together. Then imagine that it's kind of chilly in there. Then imagine that there are four games going on at the same time and you just sort of understand the rules. Now you can imagine what it was like for me.
Brent's been reading up on the ins and outs of curling. If you'd like a explanation, go here. But, basically, there are these stones that you slide down the lane and try to get in the bulls-eye thing at other the end. But the other team can also knock your stone out of the way. Each team has 8 stones at each end (which is kind of like an inning) and whoever has the stone closest to the center after all the stones have been slid, gets points. Clear as mud, right? Maybe some pictures will help.
First, you begin with the pipers, because this sport was invented in Scotland. (What is it with the Scottish anyway? They have invented a lot of games. Weird.)
Next, the first team slides their stone down the lane.
Then the sweeper people, that's what I call them anyway, get to work sweeping the ice in front of the stone. The cool thing about that is that they are actually melting a little bit of the ice to make the stone go faster or curve a certain way.
Then, if everything goes right, the stone gets somewhere in the bulls-eye.
The US played Germany. The Germans were really good. But the US had the absolute best play. The US got this stone...
Through this space...
It was pretty impressive.
Unfortunately, in the end, the Germans did triumph over the US, but it was still a good game.
So there is Curling 101 al la Ashley. I'll finish out with the rest of the pictures from that day.
Because I'm a sucker for these kind of decoration-y things, I had to take a picture.
I have a confession, I am COMPLETELY directionally challenged. I can read a map. I'm a great navigator. But I have no idea which way I'm heading. I didn't realize how directionally challenged I was until I moved away from the Salt Lake Valley with the big mountains to the East and the little mountains to the West. I am confessing this because I have no idea which mountains these are and since I am so directionally challenged, I don't even have a guess. We can pretend they're Whistler, but they could the be Olympics in Washington. I have no idea. But wasn't it a pretty day?
Here we are waiting in line to get through security, to get into the venue. Sorry about the last post. I had composed it on the LONG drive home from Canada and had to share. We really did have a great time. It's just that some days my tolerance for crowds is higher than others. This usually has to do with how much sleep I've gotten.
So, turns out, for me at least, curling is much more fun to watch on tv. That way you have the announcers telling you what's going on and you can see the bulls-eye from the top instead of the side. But it was still fun to be there. And fun to hear all the Canadian fans cheering for their home team. The US fans were fewer and farther between.
Go USA! One of these years, if the Winter Olympics are ever close to us again, I think we're going to need to go to the Halfpipe. Wasn't Shaun White amazing yesterday?
That's it, I'm addicted to the Olympics. Good thing they only come around every 2 years.