Last night I had an opportunity to curl with the manager of my club. Wow!
She is very, very good. She is, in fact, the person that teaches most people when they come to the club for lessons. I have also attended her lessons and spent the entire game trying to recall every pointer and direction she ever gave me. I desperately wanted to impress this person – viewed by many as one of the best curlers in our club.
This is not to diminish the skills of the other two players on the team. They threw shots I could only dream of – take outs the likes of which you see on TV. It was daunting, but also so wonderously incredible. I got to experience high level curling first hand. I was there to see the constant communication between the front end and the house. I was part of the amazing shots that resulted in a 7 end game with a final score of 11 – 4.
That it was a contrast to my usual social leagues could not have been more obvious. These women had skill and knowledge of each other only gained through years of experience. I even got to ask some questions that have always confused me; like what is the difference between control and normal weight. (Answer: normal refers to your normal take out weight and control is a little lighter.)
As for my own shots, well, I curled better than I had in several weeks – making one shot in two (generously). I don’t think I embarrassed myself for a beginner with three years’ experience. They even chanced a take-out for my last shot in the seventh end; which happily I made.
I was so nervous and so excited at the same time. I was terrified of messing up horribly and wonderstruck at how good the others work. It was both scary and amazingly fun. And for all I was worried, the others were very nice, friendly and encouraging. Even the club manager, who was skipping that night, as she teased me about the importance of lead rocks. I guess leads really do set up ends – at least when playing with skilled people.
It was totally exciting and an absolutely fabulous experience that I will remember for a long time to come.