Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Un torneo en Pamplona

Last weekend was lots of fun.  Although transportation plans weren't finalized until Friday morning, eight of us (four girls, four guys) drove to Pamplona in two cars Friday afternoon for a tournament on Saturday.  No car accidents this time!

For those of you who might not know, Pamplona is where they have the running of the bulls each year, during the festival of San Fermín.  But no running with bulls for us last weekend, just running for discs.

We were a much smaller and less-experienced group compared to the Madrid players that went to Rivas-Zaragoza two weeks earlier.  Oh, and guess what?  3/8ths of us were sconnies!  Imagine my surprise when I found out the girl that organized the trip was from Janesville, and another guy was from Milwaukee. Represent!

It was raining when we got there Friday night, with 90% chance of rain on Saturday.  We got settled into our hostel, then walked to the town center to find some dinner.

Saturday morning expecting the worst, we bundled up and walked down to the university's fields.  Our first game was to start at 11am.  There were five teams playing in this tournament, so that meant every team would play four games and one rest (There were always two games going on at once, so four teams playing and one not).

Games at this tournament were timed with no half, and each game lasted 40 or 50 minutes (I don't remember what length of time they were using).  This meant games could end in a tie or one point apart, which isn't the case for MUFA games.

We played three games in a row, then it was our turn to watch, rest, and score-keep.  After that fourth game, I think there was some type of lunch break scheduled.  It was three something in the afternoon, and our team only had one game left to play.  We wanted to play right away, then eat a nice big lunch.

The team we were scheduled to play last, Pamplona, had just finished playing three games in a row.  We asked if they wanted to play right away, instead of after a lunch break.  They asked for 20 minutes or so to recuperate, and then we got our game started.

During the last game the winds picked up, and it started to rain a bit.  We finished just on time, and most of us walked back to the hostel in the rain, looking forward to a nice warm shower.  I don't think we won a single game that day, but it was good practice, and our team had great spirit.

On the walk back to the hostel, we stopped at a grocery store and got ingredients for a spaghetti dinner and some after-dinner beverages.

Javier and Mary cooking dinner
By the time we got back to the hostel and some teammates made dinner, it was sometime after 6pm.  This being our first meal after breakfast, we were starving!

It continued to rain all night, but most of us went out later to a couple of bars near the old center of Pamplona.  There were sketchy plans to play a hat-tournament on Sunday, but when we woke up and it was still pouring, and since many of our players got injured the day before, we decided otherwise.

We met up with a couple of Pamplona's players at a tortilla place in the old center that morning (at noon).

Then it was a quick walk through the rain, back to the cars for a six-hour return drive to Madrid.  My car entertained ourselves by playing the alphabet game, word association, a singing game (someone picks a random word, then we had to think of - and sing - as many songs as we could that contained that word in the lyrics), and "who am I" (one person picks a famous/well-known person, and the rest of us ask yes or no questions to try to discover the identity) during the ride.  

If you know more car games, please leave comments!  We need more ideas for future car rides.

I'm currently signed up to go to another tournament in Valencia this weekend (eastern coast), although I don't yet know how/when I'm getting there, nor where I'll be staying.  I'm not worried though, because this is how the other trips have been, and I know things will get figured out between now and then.

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