Ni hao from China! I will be blogging on here for the next couple of weeks, guiding you through all our experiences and feelings prior to the opening game, and then continuing throughout the tournament. Thanks for reading and supporting us!
We’ve been here for over 10 days now, spending a week in Shanghai, and then traveling to Chengdu, the site for our first game against North Korea. Shanghai is a pretty incredible city. The atmosphere is so electrifying it almost reminds me of New York City. There are huge billboards and the city lights are amazing. New York doesn’t have quite as many people trying to sell you “Rolexes” though! The team didn’t do all that much sightseeing though, because we’ve had a lot of tough training sessions and meetings. I did venture out a little however, and checked out the Jinmao Tower, the tallest building in Shanghai, the Xintiandi district, which is the most upscale part of town, and even hit some golf balls one day. I like to be more active when we travel, instead of just staying in the hotel. I go a little crazy being inside all day, even though for us, it is so important just to rest sometimes and get off our feet.
We stayed at a great hotel, which had a Starbucks and Coffee Bean down the street so that made the team excited, and gave a little taste of home. The hotel also made an effort to make the food there as Westernized as possible, but it was still difficult to find enough food that we liked. Good thing all the girls packed their suitcases to the brim with snacks to last all month! We moved to Chengdu on Wednesday, and surprisingly the food is much better here. We had pasta, baked potatoes, steak, pizza, and most importantly cereal, my favorite food. It is important for us to get good meals in as the competition gets closer.
Moving to Chengdu made the games seem much closer and you can feel the anticipation rising. We kick off the World Cup on September 11th, but if I had my choice I would want it to be tomorrow. I think the team is ready and looking sharp. We have gotten over all our jetlag and we are playing well together. A couple more training sessions (and a trip out of the hotel to see some pandas) and it is game time baby!
photo courtesy of ussoccer.com