Got up early today and made sure to check in with the "pack" back home. Steve provided an update on the state of things in Corn Country:

Dobbie,

Leaving work early today just because I can and I really need to get some practice in BEFORE getting to Eau Claire. I'm not sure what the slight nausea is that I feel but I think it's nerves thinking about all of the GREAT teams we have to beat just to get to the sweet sixteen.

The van made it out of the shop repaired and ready to make the trip to Eau Claire. Now I have to get it loaded. Luckily Sue is a great valet and will make sure I have my kubberalls and my DMK shorts so nobody has to see my speedos (unless, of course, I need a quick startegic distraction)... You have been warned.

Leaving around 9 a.m. for Eau Claire Friday morning. Hoping to get in early enough to get practice in from 3-5 and then onto the Firehouse.

Not sure that there will be much sleep on Friday night... The excitement and anticipation is kicking into top gear. Bring it on Eau Claire we know the best are going to be in town to compete. I just hope we're ready.

Steve

I couldn't agree more with Steve. I am glad for the good night sleep yesterday, as I expect Thurs/Friday sleep wil be hard to come by. Can't wait to reunite with the group on Friday in the fields.

So today was insane. The trip from Steven's Point back to Eau Claire felt like it took 20 minutes. What a fun-filled and very full day. We left at 9:00 this morning from Plover, WI, and hit 4 different places on our way to Eau Claire: Munson Winery, Autumn Harvest Winery, Yellowstone Cheese, and Leinenkugel's brewery. I believe Jaime bought "us" 4 bottles of wine. Aside from an emergency break in Abbotsville, we made hella good time.


(Say Cheese)

A late lunch was in order, and we asked the locals that kept stalking us (they showed up at 3 of the 4 places we stopped at, ominously about 5 minutes after we got there) where to eat. They recommended Loopy's. Bad call. While the food was okay, it did take a 45 minutes for the food to come to our table; we were concerned we might miss out scheduled Leinie's tour.

But we made it to Leinies, and did the tour with Katie again. Last year, we went on the tour the day after Nationals, and the brewery wasn't in production. We thought this year would be different, however, 2nd shift on break, and we still didn't get to see bottling in action. Sadness, but the bright side is that we have a reason to come back next year. We jogged back to the tasting bar with 10 minutes to spare before last call. We had to chug our tasters and for once drinking was a sprint, not a marathon. Honey bear, black bear, bleary bear...it was a blurry bear, but fun.

Tony and I did some practice at Championship fields after Leinie's, but we had to throw 100 kubbs to each corner just to make sure the pitches were in a "Sunday Feel" before we started practicing for real. We also got to meet Team Kuboom. We even know who their 4h is, but we cannot disclose that information (they know where we live, man). We did grab some footage of their 4th, dropping kubbs like it was their full time job. Onyx would have something to say about mental illness in the hypocampus. Before we add the footage, we had to send it to the war-room in Toronto to identify if these were all thrown legally, or course (footage coming soon). They had 4 new OTG sets at practice, throwing 40 kubbs at once. They could hit 40 kubbs with 18 batons. This is practice. This is kubb. And our initial scouting was folley, they have been hard at work. I pity the team that has to come up against them on Saturday. Good luck, and pack a lunch chief.

After being mentally defeated by the clinic Kubboom was putting on at Championship Field, the group decided to get Lazy.
Four words: Lazy. Monk. Amazing. Brew.


Honestly, probably the best so far this week. Met the owner, and we were even invited in after closing, and Tony was treated like a rock star with his Kubb Shirt and his 51% Czech blood. Very cool.  Sandwiches available, "chelbicky" sandwiches and Tony grabbed a shirt and a pint glass. The beer was great, but the atmosphere made the drinks taste that much better. Tony liked the Marzen, but I was a big fan of the Vienna. We WILL BE BACK for the live draw next year.

(Chelbicky means tasty in Czech, I think)

So this place called Houligans was damn good. We stopped there for dnner, had some New Glagus Fat Squirrel on tap, and ordered some great seafood. The other interesting thing was that Tony (who pretty much hates anything unless it is meat) tried a crunk-ton of non-meat items for the first time: Gorgonzola, Lobster, Mushrooms, and cold peach soup. It was bbanay-nays. A for effort Tony. A for effort.

After dinner we decided to play a board game Tony brought specifically for the trip, and we met up in our lobby for some Point Special and a game called Galaxy Trucker. This is a game where you use tiles to build a ship, then it gets destroyed and you hate Tony for winning. I was the best at hating Tony for winning so I won! Congrats to me!


Tomorrow is a day filled with practice, pitch setup, more practice, and some Firehouse. The camera will be charged, and I'll be looking for kubbers that had too much to drink to take photos of for Day 5 blog fodder. Be on your best behavior!

Secondly, there WILL be a bubble hockey tournament at the Firehouse, assuming they still have it "so much fun. so much fun"

I am currently undefeated on Pre-Kubb Fridays at bubble hockey. Let me know if you want to try to hang with the bubble hockey king. It's on like the game where you have to save the princess from the gorilla that throws barrels at you.

'night.