One of the perks of my loosey-goosey job here at the Scotties is that I don't have early morning shifts. Today I got to the arena just after 9:30am. My biggest priority of the day was to get enough material/quotes to write up my first article for the CCA.
Todays theme: the annual Sandra Schmirler Foundation Telethon.
Sandra Schmirler was an accomplished curler who passed away too soon. As a legacy to her, the foundation fundraises to donate to hospitals to assist the in the care of premature or critcally ill babies.
Yesterday my IT boss introduced me to a woman who would let me hang out in the telethon area, so that's where I headed this morning. They had set up an area with phones, a tv, banner etc on the opposite end to the media bench. I got there just as they were filming a TSN tv spot for the broadcast. Eventually I found the woman I met yesterday, and she introduced me to a woman, who introduced me to a woman and so on. This lasted about an hour.
I chatted to each person briefly, madly scribbling down quotes that I could type up later for my article. I met many of the ladies who head up the foundation, as well as one of Sandra's coaches and her lead, who both still help out every year. I talked to the mayor of Red Deer and the deputy mayor for Red Deer County. I chatted to a couple nurses and some folks who worked for the local hospital foundation board. And I took a bunch of pictures.
I spent the next couple hours writing up my article. Which is proving to be harder than it sounds. I need to work on my interview skills, but I guess it's a learning curve.
I took a break to actually leave the arena to pick up lunch with some of my CCA office roommates. They are a fun bunch of people, and I'm pretty lucky that they're letting me hang out with them. I'm finding this insight into their world incredibly interesting.
After lunch I worked on my article for a bit. You know how it works: you stare at the computer screen hoping magic will just appear as text right in front of your eyes. After that got boring I went to finally watch a bit of the curling.
Except I didn't really watch any curling. After a couple of tweets back and forth, I found @carmenincalgary in the crowd and sat next to her - in the front row!! Normally I prefer to sit up high so I can see all the rock angles, but what the front row lacks in house view, it certainly makes up in up-close-and-personal view!
It's always neat meeting twitter people in real life, and we chatted about the curling events we've seen/volunteered for and about other curling tidbits non-fans wouldn't understand. We chirped curlers' hairstyles. Good times. Alas, my time was short and I had to return to our noisey basement office to finish my article.
Once finished writing it up, my boss (who laughed when I told him I was calling him 'my boss' on my blog) helped me post it to curling.ca and format the pictures etc. After a bit of back and forth with the big Web/IT boss in Ottawa, my article was posted for the whole world to see on the CCA website!!
I think it turned out pretty well in the end, maybe a bit flat but I'm sure my personality will sneak in at some point this week.
The evening was a mix of doing internet stuff, tweeting, and watching curling. I actually went into the stand, put my headphones in, tuned in to the TSN commentary on my FM transmitter, and watched some of the action. It was fun listening to the antics of the crowd, and relaxing to watch the rocks roll down the ice.
Near the end of the draw I started to hear that due to a recent snowfall, highway conditions on the highway I needed to take back 'home' to Innisfail were really, really bad. Something about an accident. Something about the highway being closed. I tried to get the latest info off the internet, and in the end had a decision to make: do I take the baby highway out on the prairies that I've never driven before, or do I chance the main highway. I decided to take the main highway. It was fine going home, a bit slick and slow, but I made it home ok. The highway was closed in the other direction. Big trucks decided to play bumper cars and caused a big detour. I was glad to be home with no extra excitement, but this was a good lesson to learn - highway driving to volunteer for curling events during the winter might not be such a good idea. I wonder how this will play out for the rest of the week?