March 19, 2007
Pictures from Day 1 and 2
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Day One: Saturday, March 17
We arrived here in England after a six-hour flight from O'Hare. Travel was fairly easy as we all either watched movies or slept during the flight.
When we arrived, we met our tour guide and headed off to the beautiful city of Windsor. We had a chance to walk around the city and sample some great English food. Traditional English Pasties were a big hit with our group! After lunch we all toured Windsor Castle. While we weren't lucky enough to run into the Queen, we saw some lavish quarters of the castle and its beautiful grounds.
Then it was off to Bristol and into our hotel to freshen up and have dinner. Most had Fish n' Chips and some tasty desserts. After dinner, some of us headed straight to bed, while others went out for a walk to see the busy Bristol waterfront.
We're having a great time! Stay tuned for what's happenning next with the Wildcats!
-Jill Putnam and the Cats
Day Two: Sunday, March 18
Greetings from jolly old England! Today we started the day with a traditional English breakfast at the hotel. Next we went for a walking tour of the beautiful Bristol seaport. The local marketplace was really neat to see, though we didn't have a chance to make any purchases.
Next, we checked out of the hotel and headed to Clifton for our match against the Clifton Ladies Hockey Club. Though we lost a thriller by a score of 4-3, it was a fun game for everyone. We really enjoyed the experience of our opponents' different style of hockey!
After the game, we joined the Clifton Ladies in their clubhouse for a nice post-game lunch. It was great to socialize with some of the locals!
As the afternoon wore down, we loaded the bus and made way to Torquay. We checked into a quaint little seaside hotel and enjoyed a fancy dinner in the hotel restaurant. Despite the rainy weather, we're now off to check out the seaside village! Check back tomorrow to see where our travels have taken us!
-Katie Charles, Alex Quinn, Jenny Stancati
Pictures from day 3
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Day Three: Monday, March 19
We woke up early this morning to a delicious breakfast and a broken down bus! Luckily, our tour guide, Mike, was able to fix the problem quickly and we were able to drive into Torquay right on schedule. After stopping to take scenic pictures, we were dropped off in the center of town to do
some shopping and have lunch.
On the way to our training session, we were able to visit a few other towns along the way. One of the many highlights was a visit to a miniature village in the town of Babbacombe.
Next up for our day was a professional training session, run by a local coach, Tam. Tam happens to be the coach of the team that we play tomorrow night...hope she doesn't give away all our secrets! In the session, Tam worked with us on our skills, we played some small games, and overall had a
whole lot of fun. Even though it was very cold, we had a great time!
Tonight's plan is dinner in the hotel and then a night of bowling. Overall the day was a great success!
Day Four: Tuesday, March 20
On today's trip through the more remote and historical regions of England, our tour began with the significant port town of Plymouth. This town holds a connotation to our country's beginnings, inspiring curiosity into the minds of any American tourist. A highlight of this tour was stopping to gaze at the magnificent bay wiew accompanied by the names of some of the first American settlers. This plaque was accurate and compelling to those who were potentially related to the founders of our nation. Despite the many years of American history spoon-fed to us in classrooms, it could not begin to compare to the hard evidence of our beginnings that was laid out on this plaque.
Due to its expansive shopping mall, the town of Plymouth yielded the best shopping results thus far for many of our touring members. Upon our leave of this quaint town, we embarked upon our next adventure to the city of Exeter. All of us found various things to do such as find more shopping areas, or a quaint little place to eat. Everyone enjoyed the the chance to socialize and enjoy each others' company.
After all the shopping and dining, it was finally time for the highlight of our day...the hockey match. In the game, we lost by a score of 3-0, but the score didn't reflect the caliber of play that the Cats showed on the field. Our team put forth a valient effort to find a win, but couldn't get one against this elite English team. However, the challenge helped to raise our team up to the next level of play, which will surely be reflected upon our return to the states!
Day Six: Thursday, March 22
Today we were able to enjoy the sights of London. Mike and Wayne (our fantastic tour guides) introduced us to the city by showing us the major landmarks. We saw Big Ben, the London Eye, St. Paul's Cathedral, Westminster Abbey, and Harrod's by bus. Once we got our bearings, we all went off to experience what London has to offer, especially the great food in the many cafes and restaurants.
Some groups wandered around Regent and Oxford Streets or Picadilly Circus for shopping, while other girls spent the day enjoying the amazing artwork of the National Gallery. Today gave us a chance to "get to know London", and plan our big day of sightseeing tomorrow.
We then travelled to the Tower of London to see the Crown Jewels and Torture Towers, and take photos with the Beefeaters. We also saw the Tower Bridge, and were glad to see that despite the popular children's song, it had not fallen down!
From there we headed to the final match of our hockey tour. The Cats came out strong and won our last game in England. The final score was 6-2. Afterwards, we spent time with the Old Loughtonians in their clubhouse and returned to the hotel to rest up for the big day ahead of us tomorrow.
Photos from Day Six