Ill explain this in plain English for anyone not from Canada or Winnipeg....
In Canada we have a football (American style football) league called the CFL. The Canadian Football League. This league is a bit like American Football, whereby big blokes in lots of padding chuck a weird shaped football at each other and have downs, touchdowns, running backs, quarterbacks and all the rest of the things from American Football. Except that this is Canada so instead of 4 downs we have 3. The field (pitch) is 110 yards instead of 100 (For reasons that nobody understands) and the players get paid a huge amount less than their American team counterparts. Also there are only 9 teams in the entire league, even though it is still split into east and west championships. Its all a bit rough and ready compared to the huge pay checks and glamour of the NFL/AFL. But that's what makes is exciting - For example - one of the main defensive players for the Winnipeg team - The Blue Bombers - eats at our local cafe!
Anyway, every year the season runs from early summer to November and culminates in the Grey Cup, a kind of Canadian Superbowl, with less money, less people and smaller half time stars (This year was Keith Urban) The teams from east and west fight it out for the season and basically, there are two play off games before the final. 2nd against 3rd in each division, with the winners playing the 1st placed team. The winners of these 2 games play the Grey Cup to be crowned champions. (Canadians - I am not even going to attempt to explain the crossover to anyone outside of Canada)
Well this year, the Bombers started well - winning the first 5 games. But then it started to go wrong. We lost a couple of games and then our starting quarterback got injured. Our replacement was in his 2nd year and did well, but then he too got injured. (Chris Streveler) We ended up signing another quarterback who himself had been injured at the start of the season and hadn't played since.(Zach Collaros) But what happened next was totally unexpected
The bombers had to play away to Calgary and Saskatchewan to reach the Grey Cup and the combination of Streveler running (with a broken foot) and Collaros throwing (Known as the double headed quarterback monster) gave us something extra. It was just great to watch. Then our defence got into its rhythm at exactly the right time and basically knocked the shit out of the opposing teams. They were immense. Plus we got a little bit of luck when we needed it - With the Roughriders hitting the goal post with their final pass of the game that could have taken it to extra time..
Here's a great link to the Bombers route to the Grey cup in 10 minutes.
We made the final yesterday and against the best team in the league (Hamilton Tiger Cats) we kicked their arses - Winning 33-12 and taking the Grey Cup home to Winnipeg for the first time in 29 years. Great defence - Streveler and Collaros both getting important game time and Andrew Harris, a Winnipeg born and bred running back, playing an amazing game, scoring 2 touchdowns.
The city went crazy- Portage and Main the major intersection in town was closed down as thousands of people celebrated.
Here's the highlights...
Also an awesome 9 seconds of Chris Streveler leaving the hotel with the cup and a huge cigar!!! This guy is a tank!!!
We had a great night watching it too as we were out in the afternoon to celebrate Jon and Susan's birthdays and after we all piled back to our little basement to watch the game! I felt like a local! It was awesome. No doubt I will post more later as tomorrow there is
I was lucky enough to be working downtown yesterday too, when they had a parade of the team and trophy! I found a car park overlooking Portage Avenue and then got to the forks before the team arrived to see more - It was a great hour or so - around 10000 people turned up in the middle of the working day - with a lot of kids who should have been in school, but I think it was definitely OK for them to have a day off for this! Here's a few highlights...
In other news -
We had our annual weekend away at the Yurts in Minaki a couple of weekends ago. Because we have a crazy 16month old who wants to get her hands on everything and Adam and Alena have their 10 month old Jack, we decided not to take the a small yurt each this year, but to share the super-yurt
- A 5 bedroom, 4 bathroom, fully equipped kitchen with 2 fireplace yurt, 3 storeys high, that the kids can run or crawl around in to the little hearts content and us adults can laze around, doing not a lot whilst having fun, playing games, eating, drinking and basically enjoying a good weekend together.
We had the chance for a wander around the trails in the woods and to give Hannah her first taste of sledding and snowballs - she isn't capable of making or throwing snowballs back as of yet, so basically she was an unmoving, giggling snowball target as I fired one after another at her! (see the video below!!)
It was our third year away together at the yurts and we all agreed taking the big yurt was definitely the best idea.
After the sledding at the yurts we had to get Hannah (and us) a good sled - so we got one last week and tested it out on a local hill...Hannah loved it and didn't want to come home - Its going to get a lot of use this winter!!!
Well, I had already begun preparation, for this years bigger and better Ice 'thing'.
Just a couple of week ago the backyard looked like this....
But then I saw the warm weather coming and knew that if i started to build, the 'thing' would end up and coloured stains on the front garden and not a huge ice thing.
So I grabbed a tarp covered all the blocks and crossed my fingers, hoping that a week or two later I would still have something to work with and wouldn't have to start over again...
Tonight, just before writing this, I ventured out, wearing a head torch in the dark and took a look. Unbelievably, most of the blocks were still there, a little melted around the edges, but big enough to use. I refilled the edges of the vessels (plastic bowls) .A few had spring leaks, but most survived intact. The weather is now expected to stay below freezing for the foreseeable future and my snow-glue is expected to fall from the sky in next few days (Snow mixed with a little water in a bowl, sticks ice blocks together like some kind of superglue on acid, its actually really cool and so I need snow. Then I can build quickly and safely)
So this weekend I begin to build..... Wolseley Ice here we come....