Curling in Aberdeen : Chess on Ice

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January 24th 2008
Published: January 27th 2008
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Inverurie to Aberdeen

Do you watch the winter Olympics on television, and aren't you amazed at the curling matches?! Well, it's our new favorite sport.

I was made for curling! Except that the 'sweeping' part is too much like housekeeping, and I don't know my anti-clockwise from my clockwise. And a strategy, as in chess is applied to the stones position. But it is a bit like pool, and I have played that.

If you have followed our blogs til now you know that these regional meetings Keith goes to, usually have 'fun' event for the guys to relax and get to know each other. In Italy it was 'karting'. The guys at Inverurie has curling planned for the evening. (I get to go to this one) In Aberdeen, about 30 minutes drive, there is a curling club, a private membership type of facility. With a big dining area, bar, changing rooms, trophy case, the whole first class arena.

The coach was a fit, witty man, who was a little miffed to find out that even the Inverurie guys hadn't ever played a match! We were relieved, since that meant we wouldn't be the only ones with out a clue.
After we got over our fear of falling flat on our arses, we could pay attention to the rules and strategy, or maybe Keith did. I was always afraid of slipping on the ice. Nope - never fell, not one of us!

It's a game of subtle skill, and concentration. Kind of like pool, you have to put a little 'english' on the stone, so it will bank. Weighing about 44 pounds, the stone glides down the court and will do exactly what the coach said it would! Either go left or right, eventually, depending on the amount of clockwise or anti-clockwise spin in your delivery. Your team mates will sweep in front of the stone to give it more distance and direction, or leave it be to slow it down. The house is the circle where the points are made. I still don't know if my explanation is correct but that's the short version. I've included two riveting videos, one of the drive from Inverurie to Aberdeen, exciting! And the other is the curling, more exciting.

We watched a league come in while we were eating, and saw how the game is really played! As for us we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. Now maybe Krakow will form a league. It would go good with their 'beer club' meetings!

Additional photos below
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our coach measuring our coach measuring
our coach measuring

the stone's distance from the center for points
Keith curlsKeith curls
Keith curls

I know it's a blurry photo, but I was preparing to sweep, and it difficult to take a picture and get into the correct posture at the same time! Skill!

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