Saturday, June 20, 2009

Chicago Tournament (Unoficially) Reopened!

My tournament partner Paul and I were excited about competing once again in the Midwest Petanque Tournament. But when we showed up in Grant Park this morning to register, along with our wives who had made the trip with us from Michigan, instead of seeing a couple of tent shelters brimming with activity and a few dozen people warming up on the field, we were met with a vacant baseball diamond.

Suspecting the worst, I took out my Sprint Smartphone, launched IE, and browsed to to see what the deal was. Our fears were realized -- the tournament had been cancelled due to "unplayable field conditions."

We were perplexed by this development. Sure, there were still some soft spots in the field left over from yesterday's torrential rains, but generally the field looked playable to us. After expressing amongst ourselves our disappointment at having come all this way for a cancelled tournament (on which subject my wife was the most vocal -- but that's a topic for a separate blog entry), and after throwing a few test boules to determine playability, we decided to forge ahead and unofficially reopen the Midwest Petanque Tournament.

There were three competitors, my partner Paul, his wife Jony, and myself. The format was simple -- one winner-take-all round of cutthroat petanque, with each player playing for himself, and the furthest boule after each toss determining who threw the next boule. I got out to an 8-5-4 lead, but Paul shot ahead to 10-8-6. I tied it up, and at 10-10-7, Paul's last shot left him with three points and a 13-10-7 victory for the championship.

Stay tuned for a post on the Awards Ceremony! Place and time to be determined.


Anonymous said...

Yes, I was vocal (I'm Hal's wife!) Yes, it was raining yesterday, but this morning it was not... as announced by the forecast for many days... I could perhaps understand that some world champions would not like playing petanque on field that was a bit wet, but I remembered that last year, on Sunday, it was pouring like hell and the organizers waited an hour before deciding to cancel the last round!! And this year, it's just a little humid on the ground (almost already entirely dry because of the hot weather), the sky is blue and... no petanque!!

Furthermore, We all know that these last two years people from other states attended the the organizers should know that some of those people had to leave the day before the tournament and stay at a hotel to be on time on Saturday morning... So the least I was expecting from considerate organizers was that one of them would show up at 9:00 at the field to be sure that everybody was informed of the cancellation... A little consideration is the first principle in the organisation of a petanque tournament...or the next time, just say that it is only for people who live in Chicago and there will be no problem...

Brigitte D'Arpini

Anonymous said...

Shocking! Why didn't someone call you on your cellphones? Why didn't someone even bother to check the field on Saturday morning? What is going on?

Eddie Glovins
Toledo, Ohio

Anonymous said...

Why didn't someone call everyone? S. Klein