June 20, 2010
A blog by freshman middle blocker Mary Kurisch about her 11-day Brazilian experience.
I am now at the Brazilian National Training Center for volleyball in Saquarema, Brazil. We arrived today (Friday) around 5 p.m. after a seven- hour bus ride. We played the Junior National Brazilian team today at 7 p.m. We lost to them in four games. We were disappointed but we get to play the same team on Saturday and Sunday, so we're excited to get another chance.
I know it's been a couple days since I have blogged so I'm going to fill you in on what I have been up to.
On Tuesday, the Brazilian soccer team played in the world cup, so we walked across the street to a restaurant to eat and watch the game. Everyone in the restaurant and everyone on the street had on yellow, green, or blue soccer jerseys. Others had blow horns and Brazilian flags, too. Every time Brazil scored or got close to scoring all the fans were going crazy. And after Brazil won everyone was cheering and I even heard some fireworks go off in the distance. After the game we loaded up on the bus and drove to our next game.
We played a club team from Taboao. The ages of the players ranged from 18-35 years old. We played well but we ended up losing to the team in four close games. There were many little kids outside of the court cheering. They tried to distract us while we were playing but they didn't know much English. They kept saying our numbers and "what's your name?" They also copied us saying "let's go ladies". Following the game we went out for pizza. But it was unlike any pizza place I'd been to before. The waiters had many different kinds of pizza and they would constantly walk around and serve us one piece at a time. They had pizza with corn, ham, heart of palm, tomato, and cheese. This was my favorite meal here so far because it was somewhat normal for me, but it had a Brazilian twist.
On Wednesday, we played a game in the early afternoon. This time the team we played was all in our age group, and we won the match in five games. We all had so much fun playing. After the game we asked them if they wanted to trade t-shirts with us and they were so excited that they took off their shirts right there in the gym to trade. After trading shirts we went to watch two other teams play at E.C. Pinheiros, a country club-like sports center in the middle of Sao Paulo. The place was really nice and there were so many different sports games going on while we were there. After the girls club teams played we watched a couple boys club teams play. After that we called it a night knowing we had another earlier afternoon match on Thursday.
On Thursday, we played the team Sao Caetano. We had a great game and beat this team in three games. We decided to play one more game after that for fun and we ended up winning that one, too. After the game we again traded t-shirts with the team. Then we loaded the bus and traveled to San Jose dos Campos where we would stay for the night and leave for the Brazilian Training Center the next day.
Well, that's about all we have done so far. I am looking forward to exploring the Training Center more tomorrow and to play the Junior National team again. I will keep you posted on how it all goes.
If you have any questions, comments or concerns for Mary, please e-mail Volleyball SID Zach Peters (firstname.lastname@example.org).