Ireland in Turkey – Day 3

Sunday 8th March

Sunday saw the players have an early morning today with breakfast in the hotel to start their day. They then loaded onto the coach and travelled down to the rink for practice. The rink is brand new with the paint still drying! Although, the zamboni driver is having a few problems; the boards seem to get in his way a bit. We should have brought our own Roman with us to give him a few lessons. On the ice, the players were really feeling the altitude. The training was extremely tough and the ice was very soft. Although tired, their spirits are still up.

On the way back from practice, the team stopped at a local Erzurum supermarket and filled up on supplies. The Turkish economy is now in full recovery! While the parents should be on full alert for requests for more funds. Now back at the hotel, lunch was being served and the players had some nice downtime for the afternoon. This involved some hand eye coordination in the shape of a snowball fight. Followed by a team building exercise in the shape of snowmen! After that, it was a bit more rest for the squad followed by dinner and a movie. Bed time soon followed with a strict curfew of 10:00 pm!!! They’ll be thinking about the tournament start tomorrow and their first game against Turkey.

Meanwhile, the parents chilled out and found the pizza restaurant at the end of the ski slopes. Reminiscent of the only edible food for many of us in Romania! We also took part in some gentle exercise, gingerly walking in the snow. We truly discovered just how exhausting this altitude really is. So we decided to retire to the bar for some r & r. Bring on Turkey…

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