I woke up February 27th late -- a day of travel can do that to you, especially in winter, and especially when you end up at the wrong airport after fourteen hours in transit.
I'm back home in SoCal, it's warm, and my broom isn't here, so I'm off to yet another airport to get my curling gear.
My "worry" is with my team. When I signed up for the Wednesday Night league in Hollywood, I said I'd be happy to skip a team with brand-new curlers. Be careful what you ask for.
They gave me the newest possible curlers -- Lenka and Juri.
They were nervous. They weren't "this is our first game" nervous, they were "how do you play this, we've only seen it on TV" nervous. I was "how do I take two people who have never curled and get them ready for their first game."
I drafted Brian, my vice-skip from my Saturday team so that he could skip the first night while I mostly taught.
I asked Lenka and Juri to come early, and brought my netbook and an instructional video. We practiced the delivery position with your slider foot flat under your center of gravity and trailing foot extended -- everything I could think to talk about wtihout actually having ice.
I talked about the right way to walk on ice -- they grew up with extreme cold, so that was mostly a waste of time.
We got on the ice, took a coule of practice throws, started the game, and lost.
Over the next few weeks, they improved dramatically. We played one person short, which meant that they each delivered three rocks per end, more practice.
Juri figured out the strategy quite well by the end of league -- to the point that he called the skip's rocks, and I threw what he called.
I'm very proud of our third place finish in the Wednesday league.