Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Road Trip Chronicles (Part One.)

Last season I wrote a detailed piece about Life on the Road. The purpose was to give fans and parents a true idea of what life on the road is like in Junior Hockey. Given the fact that the Stars only have two overnight trips left, I felt compelled to do the same for this trip.

8:40 AM - I arrive at the Civic Center with a coffee in hand. Besides my black coffee I have my broadcast kit, a small suitcase, a pillow and my suit-bag. I make sure I unload all of my gear by the side door before I park.

8:45 - The players and coaching staff begin to arrive. Blair Atcheynum gives me the gears because I didn't bring him a coffee. I probably should have texted him before my run to Tims. My bad.

8:47 - We all congregate in the Star's dressing-room and the players start packing their gear. Equipment guru Dale Jackson is on-hand to make sure that the boys have their gear, towels and other essentials for the road-trip.

8:50 - Players continue to arrive. The ones that are done packing are either eating their breakfast sandwiches or talking about a variety of different things. I won't name names, but two players had a detailed conversation about the recent episode of The Bachelor. I guess the girls are hot? I hope so.

9:15 - The bus arrives to the Civic Center. Imagine if you will, 20-odd Junior hockey players turning into a thundering herd trying to get their gear onto the bus first. Luckily my seat is second to the front (behind the coach) so my journey is a short-one. There's added room on the bus this morning, so storing all of my stuff is a painless exercise. As the players file onto the bus, most will say a quick hello to our driver Larry, who has been our main driver all season. I've written about Larry before, I remain extremely grateful for his long hours and dedication to his craft.

9:27 - The bus has officially left the Civic Center. The ETA in Yorkton is about 2:00 - 2:30. Most players will fall asleep the instant the bus takes off. For those unaware of how bus-seating works - The coaches, trainer and broadcaster are at the front. Rookies are always at the front of the bus, and the 20-year-olds have earned the right to sit at the back of the bus.

9:55 - The bus is eerily quiet. Most are sleeping. I think I may attempt the same. Some people cannot sleep in moving vehicles. I am somewhere in the middle. I can fall asleep, but I need to position my pillow just right against the window to do so.

Big game tonight. More Road-Trip Chronicles to come.



Anonymous said...

LOVE the road trip chronicles. Can't wait to read more!

cr_clear said...

Thanks for the peek inside Dan. I look forward to more instalments.

cr_clear said...

Dan - any chance that you could post the audio of your Monday evening radio show? I always miss it because of a prior commitment. If your boss at the station has any concerns that it would take away from their listenership and ability to sell advertising, then I say it is the same argument used for radio broadcasts of the games affecting game attendance. Re-broadcasting your show on the net will only add to the listenership overall because internet podcasts will be like promoting the show.......and thus an increased audience on Monday nights. I'm sure you have thought of this before but I just wanted to add my 2 cents and urge you to follow through (if CJNB will allow it). Anyone else out there interested? Show your support on this blog and we might make it happen.

Anonymous said...

I missed the Boyd Wakelin Interview.. It would be kinda cool to hear what Wakes had to say..