London 2012, Days 3/4 – Glasgow
The past two days were “off days,” for us members of the U.S. soccer media, but they felt like anything but. Thursday, I headed over to the team hotel to interview head coach Pia Sundhage and a few of the players shortly after they arrived back from watching the Japan-Spain men’s game. (Spain, a gold medal favorite in the men’s match, lost to Japan 1-0.)
Check out my interview with Sundhage HERE.
And my feature on Sydney Leroux, the youngest member of Team USA, and her long path to the 2012 Olympics HERE.
Then, my friend Russell, who is engaged to my friend Kristi and is from Glasgow, picked me up at the hotel around 8. (I don’t think I’ve mentioned yet that the sun rises here around 5 am and sets around 10 pm!) Russell is in town for a few days, so he and his friend Willy were kind enough to take me on a tour of their city. I tried my first Scottish beer, a Caledonian, and had sticky toffee pudding for dessert (who cares what I ate for dinner!?) at a cute restaurant called Epicures in the West End. (I love that most restaurants here have free wifi — especially helpful when you send in a story from a hotel lobby only to find out — two hours later! — that it never sent. Sorry for e-mailing at the table, guys!)
Then we drove around the city, checked out the bars on Ashton Lane, the cutest street in Glasgow, visited the Olympic rings in George Square and had a glass of wine at The Corinthian Club, an old bank converted into a casino and one of the most ornate, elaborately decorated buildings in Glasgow, with multiple levels of bars, clubs and private dining rooms.
Friday, it was more of the same. Back to the team hotel for some interviews and writing. [Read my preview of Saturday’s game vs. Colombia HERE.]
Then I walked to Sauchiehall (pronounced Sowchy Hall) Street downtown to have lunch. This time, it was Indian food. There is a large Indian population here in Glasgow, and I believe more Indian restaurants than any other type of cuisine. Good thing it’s one of my favorites!
After lunch and a quick nap, I met up with some friends to watch Opening Ceremonies and hit the town one last time. (Not gonna happen after the game tomorrow night!) We went back to Ashton Lane and then danced the night away at Oran Mor, a huge sandstone church that was converted into a restaurant/theater/club and is located directly across the street from my hotel in the West End. According to my taxi driver, “oran mor” is Gaelic for “the big music” or, probably more appropriately, “the great music.” The music was definitely loud.
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