Champs!

The flight to Nashville was pretty much the same as any other flight, though it was a bonus to have so many friends and league mates aboard. 

Once we’d settled in at the hotel, Circuit Broad and I found another dozen officials, packed ourselves into various cars and headed to dinner.  An amazing family style dinner with great food, fun with rules and the greatest people I’ve met from around the country. 

Day one started with a little time to sleep in, as the opening ceremonies did not start until noon. It wouldn’t be a derby morning, without a cup of Hi-Death’s coffee.  A great start to a great day!

Opening Ceremonies were nice, not too extravagant, but it was very cool to see all of the teams, from all around the world.

My crew was assigned only one game Friday, the last game of the day, Victoria Roller Derby League vs. Minnesota Roller Girls. It was a long wait to 8pm, but I had plenty of time to catch up with friends, eat some cookies, visit some vendors, and see some great derby.

The night closed with a few of us hanging around the hotel lobby. Crew assignments were distributed and once again my crew received some of the best games of the day. Starting at 4pm with VRDL vs London Brawling.

Many more great games of derby on Saturday, and the opportunity to visit with my father and a few other family members. It was great being able to share not only roller derby with them, but also my pregnancy.

I finished the night with the last game of the day, Gotham vs. London. Another successful Lineup Tracking team with Stacy K.

After a quick shower and some dinner, Circuit Broad and I made our way to the lobby, where NSOs and “hackers” from another convention started a dance party. We were up too late, and got little sleep, but it was worth it to hang out one more time with some great people.
Sunday, I appropriately ended my roller derby career, entering lineups for my Detroit Derby Girls competing for first place in the Division 2 against the Rideau Valley Roller Girls.

144 games over 3 years, finishing my career at the International WFTDA Championships. I couldn’t ask for a better time.

And now on to new adventures!

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On the Go: Heartbeat

Trying to catch up on all the stuff that has happened this week. 

It started with a toothache, that led to a root canal. Where I nearly jumped out of the dental chair. My heart was pounding, and tears were streaming down my cheeks.  But all I kept thinking was, ‘I’m sorry baby, I’m sorry mommy is freaking out and it’s probably all crazy in there for you right now, but it will all be over soon. Mommy loves you’.

But that is all a distant memory now, nothing to worry about.

I had a very quick visit with the doctor yesterday and I got to record this:

#itzybitzy heartbeat: http://youtu.be/BoJI86X_Xy8

Now I can listen to you whenever I want. 

We’re half way through this crazy journey.  20 weeks to go!

On the Go: Fourth of July Weekend

Mike, Diesel and I headed up north to Camp Grief over the weekend to celebrate the Fourth of July along with our neighbor’s wedding.

The weather was perfect. The ceremony was quick and to the point. The couple were excited and had a great time.  There was great food (a pig roast), and a lot of fireworks (so many).

The rest of the weekend was spent hanging with friends and family, doing a little garage sale visiting and generally having a good time. 

On the Go: Back At Home

After spending 3.5 hours walking circles at Heathrow waiting for it to open, I grabbed a shitty coffee and one last tea cake and mailed my last post cards.  I got on my flight to Amsterdam and only really remember waking up being handed a cheese sandwich. It was a good cheese sandwich but was really glad I got some sleep.

I had to race all the way across the Amsterdam airport to get to my gate to do security once again and was very thankful that I had checked my bag rather than dealing with it again.

The flight back to Detroit was long. I watched the Coen Bros. film, “A Serious Man” , followed by “Juno” and then “Saving Mr. Banks.” There was also a crying baby that was fun,  and a lady offering advice on how to quiet it.  Oh and gelato.

Landed in Detroit on time, with no hassle finding my bag or getting through customs. Jack picked me up and drove me home where I had a nice long shower and have started some laundry.

Glad to be home. 

On the Go: London Day 10

Day 9 Bonus: after we got back in our room and was ready to settle in for the night, Meryl stopped by and said she had the Detroit Pistoffs vs. Devil’s Night Dames home game streaming on her phone. Cookie and I joined her and Kraken in their room to listen to the bout.

It was so nice to hear home and to know that everything seemed to be going well.  The Pistoffs won, which determined that the D*Funk All Stars will be going up against the Grand Prix Madonnas at Champs. The Grudge Match is still yet to be determined. 

Today, is my last official day in England.  I slept in, had breakfast and barely had time to settle into bout game day before having to walk to the venue.

I was Box Managing the first game of the day, Detroit vs. Toronto. Detroit kept a decent lead and managed to get a win. Though the box was busy, the 30 second penalties really kept the crazy at bay. 

I did have to give 2 misconduct penalties,  and had a weird jammer bounce with an inactive jammer, but otherwise it went as well as I could hope. 

After a two hour break, Detroit played London again.  This time, I was able to sit in the stands with a few other officials, sans stripes and pinks, and cheer for my Detroit Derby Girls.

Lastly, I got to lineup track for the Rocky vs. Toronto game.  I was happy to not be in the box for that one. 

After the little award ceremony, I headed back to the hotel and gathered my stuff.  My new NSO friend Mary, was kind enough to drive me into London.

She ran me past Big Ben, the BBC, and Piccadilly Circus.  We also stopped to snag photos at Abbey Road and across the river from The London Eye. 

And now here I am, sitting in Heathrow Airport a few hours too early, eager to be home, but wishing I could spend just a little more time. 

See you soon, America!

On the Go: London Day 8 & 9

Hey! Sorry for not blogging yesterday! It was a busy day. 

Friday morning started with a nice walk through Guildford to the train station and Starbucks. The town is really nice.

I spent a good part of the day resting up and just getting my head around the fact that it was bout day.

Detroit played a closed bout against London. Detroit lost, and it felt more like a scrimmage than a bout for rankings.  But it did get my head back in the game for the tournament this weekend.

I met a lot of fun new Officials and learned a few new things.  We had a few pints after the bout before heading to bed. 

This morning was a great day for sleeping in, eating breakfast and cleaning up before the Triple Header.

Detroit was up first against Rocky Mountain. Another loss. That was followed by Toronto getting beat by London. We had a two hour break where I was able to grab a sandwich. 

After that it was Rocky Mountain vs London, London taking the win again.

After a couple of pints and a lot of good laughs it was back to bed again. 

One more long day tomorrow and then it’s time to head home.

On the Go: Dublin & London Day 7

Today was our last day in Dublin, as we headed to England in the afternoon.

We got up fairly early, checked out of the hostel and headed back into town to do some last minute souvenir shopping and post card sending. We walked through Trinity College and along parts of Temple Bar we hadn’t yet seen.

The weather was actually quite nice and it was a shame to be leaving.

We had a close call making it to the airport but luckily we made it to our gate and boarded on time. The flight was quick and we were soon in England looking for a way to get to Guildford where the tournament is being held.

We caught another break as there was a direct train heading out of the airport in just 15 minutes. We hurried up, got a group ticket which saved us some money and in less than an hour we were pulling into town.

I haven’t yet seen much of Guildford, but it seems nice. I opted to grab a quick bite and a beer and settle into the room with some WiFi. I don’t have to be at the venue until 7pm tomorrow, so I am not sure what I am going to get up to in the morning. If I had my way, I would take a super early train into London proper and visit some sites if I could. We shall see!

On the Go: Dublin Day 6

Today, we took a bus back to the airport and rented a car.

Tigs was the brave one in the group and drove us out to the Cliffs of Moher on the west coast of Ireland.  It was about a 2.5 hour drive, part on the express way, part on those tiny little walled in streets you see on TV.

The cliffs were beautiful.  Even as high up as we were, the wind helped along the sea spray.

I’m told, the movie “The Princess Bride” was partly filmed at that location.  Added bonus. 

After we’d hiked all around and visited the gift shop, we got back in the car and sought out lunch.

The GPS lead us to a cute seaside pub, where I had a pint of ale and a plate of fish and chips.  The four of us split a dessert platter and then we were back on the road. 

We made a few steps along the way. Taking photos when we found neat little scenes. 

I am writing this now from the back seat of our car as we make our way past fields of cows, horses and sheeps. The countryside is dotted with little houses and towns. 

We still have an hour drive left and I’m not sure what tomorrow has in store before our flight to London. 

On the Go: Dublin Day 4

Cookie, Meryl, Tigs and I had an early morning flight to Dublin today.  Thankfully, it was a very quick trip. 

Once we were settled in our little apartment, we headed out for breakfast.  Lured by a neon sign that read ‘breakfast is on’ we settled on a little Italian place. And we were all disappointed to learn that breakfast had passed. 

We did a little shopping and relaxing after our Italian lunch.  I bought a few souvenirs and had a pint of Guinness. 

The weather was fun,  changing from sunshine to rain nearly every hour. 

It didn’t take long for us to be back out on the streets looking for food again.  We settled on a little place called The Bakehouse. The girls had sandwiches, while I had a Guinness & Beef pie with mashed potatoes.  So good!

Wifi is spotty.  So I haven’t been able to post many pictures yet.  Hopefully I’ll get it worked out tomorrow.  The other 4 girls showed up while we were sitting in the computer room. 

We were all excited to get back to practice and tonight Dublin Roller Derby was happy to have us. 

On our way to their practice space, we had some trouble with the bus system. First, the wrong bus. Then, the wrong direction. And finally, Cookie and I didn’t have the right funds. Thankfully, Dublin’s HNSO that I had been emailing with, happened to be on the bus, recognized my WFTDA track jacket, and paid our fares.

Practice was a lot of fun.  I think everyone learned something new, and made a few new friends. I even led the officials on an Apple Juice Break.

Tomorrow, Tigs, Cookie, Meryl and I are going to explore the city. With a stop at the Jameson Distillery.  The Distillery, that one of the Refs from tonight work at. 

Thanks again to Dublin for hosting us at their practice, for getting us to the practice, and driving us all back to the apartments!

On the Go: Edinburgh Day 1

Arrived yesterday in Edinburgh and took a double-decker bus to our hostel, or at least to as nearby as we could.  We then had to walk up about 100 stairs to get to where we were staying. 

Meryl and I are in a cute little private room on the 3rd (what they call 2nd) story. It has two single beds and a dresser.  There are two shower rooms and a kitchen on our floor.  You have to remember to take a key with you when you need to use the bathroom. 

Once we got settled in our room, Meryl and I took a nice stroll around the neighborhood and got a bite to eat. We met up with Warp, Cookie, Tigs, Lazer and Racer and explored a bit more. 

Tigs and I grabbed a hard pear cider at the pub near our hostels and had a delightful time with a couple of boys from Dublin.  They shared a number of places we need to visit next week. 

We all hit the sack pretty early after a long day of travel.  I was up at 8 am and enjoyed a quick walk to the pharmacy and convenience store. Now we’re waiting on the gang to get up so we can grab breakfast and visit the Edinburgh Castle.