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Tuesday Oct. 1st 2013.

We all met at J.F.K. Terminal 8 for our Air Berlin flight to Munich via Duselldorf. It was our first opportunity to Meet Alex and Jenna from Chicago, Pete from Louisiana and Kelly from Nova Scotia.

After introductions and a something to eat it was wheels up  and we were on our way. No matter how many trips I do I am always amazed at how much easier the flight going is than the flight returning.

Wednesday Oct. 2nd

After a quick turnaround in Dusselldorf we were on the ground in Munich at 9:30 a.m. We picked up our motor coach, and Jean Marc, and headed to Kaufbern. Our game was not until 2:30 p.m. so we stopped at a local restaurant to eat. Everyone made there way through the German and managed to find something to eat.

When we finally arrived at the rink we met Daz and Sarah ,  Torsten and Chrissy, Bobbi and Chuck and of course Big Mac. All names that would be a big part of our trip in Germany.

Kaufbern was short a few players to start the game, so we gave them Scussi, who scored 2 goals against us. Probably not a good idea in hindsight.

We lost this game but enjoyed a few beers in the Rink restaurant afterward. By 5:00 p.m. we headed to Bad Tolz our home for the next 5 days. We checked in and met Reinhard and Danielle who would be our hosts for the week. After unpacking a brave few went to Munich and the rest to bed.

Thursday Oct. 3rd

Up at 6:00 a.m. the bus was departing for Schoungau at 7:00 a.m. The 2 hour trip to Schoungau was uneventful , but pretty. When we arrived we were shown our cabin and given a case of beer. Seemed like a perfect start to a German Morning. However, we did not play so, well , and lost 5-2.

After the game they had lunch for us in the restaurant. We headed back to Bad Tolz at 2:30 p.m.

Arrived home and once again some headed off to Munich and others to Bad Tolz.

Schoungau Lunch

Friday Oct. 4th

Free day to go to Oktoberfest and that is what almost everyone did. This was the second week of the 2 week festival and it is called Italian week because of all the Italians who attend. Oktoberfest is always extremely crowded and a crazy atmosphere. Scussi and big Mac were a hit with their lederhosen, but the ladies with the Dirndls were certainly nicer to look at.

Oktoberfest 2013

Saturday Oct. 5th.

Tournament day, and everyone was at the rink by 10 a.m. The rink is only 4 miles from the hotel, so it was a quick trip. We had four strait games. Our bye was the last round of the tournament, so we all new it was going to be a battle. We won our first two games lost the third badly and lost a close one in our final game to the Germans. We headed back to the hotel to get ready for the tournament party at 7:00 p.m. The party was well attended by all 5 teams and we had over 100 people.

Winners Trophys

Sunday October 6th

Sunday was a free day. Chrissy and Torsten were headed home as well as Big Mac and Hans. Everyone send their good byes and headed back to Munich. Some to the Oktoberfest and others to Olympic Park to see the DSL professional game at 3:00 p.m. Everyone was home pretty early to pack and get ready for the morning.

Monday October 7th

10:00 a.m. was a departure for Merano Italy. Just as we were getting ready to leave Reinhard the owner of the hotel came out and gave everyone a free jar of homemade jam. Our trip to Merano was a little over 4 hours without stops. The trip takes us through the Italian Alps and I heard more than one person say, “I have never seen mountains that high”. It was a beautiful trip and it went quickly.

When we arrived in Merano we stopped at the ice rink and dropped off our bags before heading to the hotel. When we arrived at the hotel we were met by Manfred the hotel owner who made sure everyone settled in comfortably and that 2nd beds were put in the rooms where two male players were staying. We played our first game in Italy at 9:30 p.m. We only had 8 players, not the 15 we had in Munich. However, we won 6-1. After, there was dinner at the rink and than we went to a very nice local wine bar named KIM.

Scusi At the Bar.

Tuesday October 8th

Free day , no game, A lot of people went to Bolzano to see Utzie and others shopping in Merano. Several of us went out to diner with Simon to a local Brewery named Pfefferllicher, it was terrific.

Wednesday October 9th

We had a game at 9:30 p.m. vs. the Merano P.D. team, but the day was free to do as you liked

Tonight we recruited Peter to play with us and he was a big help. We won the game 4-3 and once again had dinner with the other team at the rink.

Thursday October 10th

We had rented cars to go to the Police Headquarters in Bolzano and than on for a tour of the Dolomite mountains. The mountains were beautiful, but the switchbacks on the road made more than one of us car sick.

We had our last game at 9:30 p.m. vs. the Bulldogs. Roberto had recruited 2 kids from the junior team to play with us and without them we would have lost. We won 5-3. We went to have diner at a local restaurant that was great. Our walk home in the rain was very wet and very cold, but memorable.

Friday October 11th.

Packing up and moving to Venice. The bus picked us up at 10:00 a.m. sharp. We made a short stop at the rink to pick up the hockey bags and we were on our way. It was about a 5 hour drive. The trip was mostly on unremarkable highways, not like the trip to Italy from Munich through the Alps.

We unpacked and walked to the train station, about 5 minutes, and took the train to Venice, about a 20 minute ride. When you get off the train you are in Venice, Gondolas and all.

Saturday October 12th.

It was a free day in Venice. Everyone did what they wanted. Mike took the train to Florence, he said it was a 2 hour and 10 minute ride. Al met up with his Italian cousins, and the rest of us explored all there was to see in Venice. Everyone was back to the hotel on the 10:00 p.m. train.

Sunday October 13th

Last day, Shuttle was leaving at 10:20 a.m. We were early to the airport so we had to sit around with our bags for 2 hours.

Airport in Venice