Sunday, March 27, 2011

Thanks for a Great Year!

It’s that time of year again, we all start looking back and reflecting on our respective seasons, and start looking ahead to the next one.
As I look back at the 2010-2011 racing season I have to consider it one of my most successful. Especially considering where I came from last season. At the end of last season I was dragging myself around the race courses at Nationals in Whitehorse, having just recovered from a brutal cold and pink eye. My body was telling me something- it wasn’t happy.
I took a few months off to get some energy back, and made a plan with Eric about how I was going to get back on track.
It seems like the plan worked, I skied to a number of personal best results this season, and I feel like a completely different person than the tired sack that fled Whitehorse Nationals early because she could barely think rational thoughts.
It’s been a fun season, and I’m looking forward to the next one eagerly as I have an amazing team of people around me that have helped make this year a good one.

Eric and Justin were a great coaching duo all season. Crawford and Company Canada Inc, ADHS the Almonte branch of the Royal Canadian Legion and the Almonte Civitan Club were also key in supporting me this season. THANK YOU!

Here’s a few photos from the spring so far- Kieran has been out visiting, so he has been documenting the last week.

Friday, March 11, 2011

World Champs recap in numbers:

2- number of team members who were crowned World Champions!
6- where Dasha and I finished in the team sprint
20,000- number of people camping in the bush on Saturday night before the 50km
120,000- number of people who came out to watch the 50km
1 million- number of people so spectated throughout the championships
4 million- population of Norway (that means about a quarter of Norway watched part of World Champs live)
15- my estimate of how many hats my teammates and I made this week- amount of yarn was our limiting factor.
10- rating out of 10 I would give the 2011 Oslo World Championships

We have now moved to Finland where we will race this weekend, so here are a few Finnish stats:

106- my score from bowling last night
93,94- Eric and Nish’s bowling scores
200-Lenny’s bowling score (his arms are so long he only has half as far to bowl)
0- number of tasty meals I’ve eaten since arriving in Finland

And here's a you-tube video you should watch if you haven't already seen it:
Alex & Devon's race- by George

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

A few notes on the Norwegian Culture

First of all I always knew that Norway was a country full of pride and nordic super fans, but until World Championships started I don’t think I realized just how into skiing they are. With crowds between 50,000 and 70,000 race days have been nothing short of amazing.
So, yes they love skiing, but what else?
-They love waffles, and brown cheese.
-There are ski trails everywhere- probably partly due to how deeply rooted in nordic culture they are, but around the Oslo area alone there are over 2000km of ski trails.

It’s not uncommon to see sights like this in urban areas...

Or a dude like this getting on a city bus or train...

Or a dude like this plowing his driveway...

-They love wool sweaters- and really anything wool.

And climbing trees I guess...

-Bjorgen and Northug are essentially rock stars, appearing in news papers daily every month of the year, and in the gossip rags that you find at the grocery store checkout.
-A sweet Sunday outing includes packing a backpack full of beer, sausages, reindeer hides, Norwegian flags, and chocolate, strapping on the cross country skis and trudging many kilometers.

Notice the flatscreens, this is out in the bush-waaay out.

-They built a sweet ski jump.

Sweet ski jump floating on the top of the holmenkollen hill.

-They like art that airs on the erotic side of the spectrum.

They are into skiing-all in, and the atmosphere on race day is something that can’t be matched anywhere else in the world of nordic skiing.

Oh, and they have a bit of a rivalry with the swedes.

Sprint-relaying tomorrow!
Thanks for stopping by, and thanks to Dad for the photos :)