Thursday, January 31, 2013

Bonjour de Rouen! (Hello from Rouen!)

We arrived here safely Tuesday afternoon and have been having tons of fun regardless of the rainy weather. After all of our traveling on Tuesday  we finally got to settle down at the hotel and go out to lunch at a creperie called “St. Romain’s” where we kicked off our week in France by enjoying some of their delicious crepes, my favorite French meal! After lunch we freshened up at the hotel and took a walk to the rink for practice. It was a comfortable 10 degrees C (that’s 50 degrees F) a pleasurable contrast to last year’s French Cup where it was below freezing. Despite our exhaustion from the plane and bus rides, we had a great practice. We had the honor of sharing our practice ice with Team Synchro Energie from France. It was exciting to watch their programs and warm up alongside them. We did a few run throughs and sections of our short and long programs to start getting our heads back in the game. It felt good to stretch out our legs and move around after being cooped up in our plane seats for so long. Feeling satisfied after practice, we grabbed some dinner at “Holy Cow!” a new burger restaurant that we discovered and headed to bed for some much needed rest.
Sightseeing in Rouen

Skyliners with Coach Josh Babb

Wednesday morning was filled with sightseeing and shopping. The pouring rain and gusting wind didn’t stop us from walking all over town. I think we were definitely a sight to see in our clear ponchos (we were a little short of umbrellas!) We visited the Cathedral, a 13th Century cemetery, a park with a playground and swans, as well as the Rouen Art Museum. The museum had many impressive paintings and sculptures that we enjoyed snapping pictures of. The city of Rouen is beautiful and the French Cup is such a big deal here. Advertisements for the event are found all over town and many shopkeepers I spoke to knew about the competition. We saw a big sign for the French Cup at the park we visited. It sounds like the arena will be crowded this weekend. I’m looking forward to it! That night we had a great two hour practice and revisited “Holy Cow!” for dinner.

Skyliners with Team Leaders Dann Krueger and Justin Dillon

At the Parade of Teams

This morning we had our last unofficial practice ice. Practice went smoothly. We have adjusted to the Olympic sized rink and are feeling confident and ready to compete tomorrow and Saturday  This evening was the parade. We got some team pictures with our team leaders, Dann and Justin and with our head coach, Josh. It was amazing to see all the different countries’ waving flags as we walked through the streets of Rouen. People watched the parade from their windows and took pictures. What a thrilling experience! Can’t wait for the competition to officially to begin tomorrow! Good luck to all teams!

 Go USA!!


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