Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Italy driving and Paganello

Learning the driving culture in Italy was an interesting experience.
It started with a taxi ride from Bologna airport to the train station and we added to our experience by driving from Rimini to La Spezia. We learnt:
- speed limits are guidelines
- marked lanes are guidelines
- side of the road is a guideline
- indicators are only used to indicate hazards (which is when all the traffic stops to go over a rise in the freeway or to read a sign)
Pretty much, anything goes. .

Bologna was an interesting mix of old and new. I was a little disappointed with the number of '70s flats, but had some great fun taking shots of brightly painted buildings with window shutters. We also started our daily intake of gelato at a deliciously authentic gelateria.

One of our primary reasons for travelling was to play Paganello, an international beach tournament. I was playing with Super Hot Pot, the defending champions and Lee was playing with WizMix, a mixed version of the Swiss team he played with last year. Lee's team beat their 22nd seed to finish 12th. We were beaten by FemBots, a US team, in the final. Some nerves on our side (for me at least) plus some hard defense on their side saw them off to a 3-1 lead. Our defense was lucky to get a turn and our offence fought for every point. In the end, our sand legs (probably also aggression and skills?) weren't as strong and they took it away 13-5. I loved playing with my team mates, I loved my new Skins, I loved the sunshine, I love that I don't have a sock tan and I have new love of playing on sand - it's hard going and I am sore, but it makes you realize how much impact is going through your body usually, even on grass.

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