Well I have finally made it back to the USA! Last night I watched a close game between the USA and Australia followed by an intense game between France and Russia. I was lucky enough to bump into a girl I knew back from when I played in England who had an extra ticket to the France/Russia game. The ticket I had purchased was up in the nose bleeds (it’s the Olympics, it doesn’t matter where you sit!) but I was able to sit 5 ROWS BACK AT CENTER COURT. It was amazing. I got to see Dumerc from France go against Becky Hammon from Russia… two of the best PGs in the game were battling 30 feet in front of me. I attached a picture to give you an idea of how close I really was. France ended up winning that game securing themselves at least a silver medal. Seeing them celebrate and join hands and run in a circle smiling and laughing you could see the pure joy in their faces. This is what this team had worked years for. (It was more exciting than the USA team after their win, because France was making history with this win, whereas the USA was expected to win). Leaving the arena was quite entertaining surrounded by the French fans. The French men’s team had already been eliminated so all the focus was on the women’s team. They were waving their flags and chanting the entire way out of the arena onto the underground. I had my American flag shirt on and walked proudly, knowing that France was up against the USA in the finals and USA was the favorite to win.
I somehow ended up getting bumped up to first class on my flight home back to Baltimore. Wow, first class is the way to fly! They give you everything you need up there… from ear plugs, blankets, pillows, even socks! So I was able to reflect on my European trip comfortably J In between watching movies, I began reading Coach Logan’s summer reading assignment “The Lone Survivor.” It is written by a NAVY seal that fought in Afghanistan. The courage and heroism these men show for our country is unbelievable. It is amazing to see how teamwork plays a huge role in the highest rank in the United States Army, just as it does with a basketball team. Working as a unit will be far more successful than working as disconnected individuals. I look forward to discussing this book with the staff and players once the school year starts.
These past two weeks have flown by!! It was definitely a once in a lifetime trip and I couldn’t be more thankful for Loyola, and Coach Logan, for giving me the opportunity. At the end of the day, experiencing different cultures makes me realize even more how much I love where I come from. Meeting people from all over, I learned that it is some peoples’ dreams to come to America. Not just to visit, but to live. So after this trip I can confidently say, that I am proud to be an American!