European Tour -- Day Two
May 21, 2012
Hey everyone! My name is Joey Ptasinski, and I just finished my freshman year as a member of the basketball team at Lafayette. We were lucky enough to have been given the opportunity to come to Europe as a team, tour cities such as Paris and London, and even play four games against some of the world's premiere talent, including the Under-20 Belgian National Team. As we progress throughout the tour, I will be updating you on all of the most important and humorous events.
To begin with, the flight here gave us all a little taste of what Dan Trist goes through whenever he flies places, even though our eight-hour flight was almost 20 hours shorter than his Australia to America rides. Being the most experienced flyer, Dan felt it was necessary to stand for the last hour of the flight, returning to his seat about a minute before landing. Seth Hinrichs, being the extraordinarily nice young man that he is, developed what seemed to be a life-long friendship with the woman sitting next to him who was probably 65-years-old and spoke very little English. Rob Delaney and I lucked out by getting aisle seats when we were originally forced to sit in the middle. Alan Flannigan figured out a way to sleep for six of the eight hours. I am still impressed that as some of us got little or no sleep while flying.
When we arrived at Brussels International Airport, we grabbed our luggage and proceeded to the hotel. After a short walk around the city of Mechelen, we split into groups and found places to eat. I think it is safe to say that the portion sizes in the United States are just slightly larger than the ones here in Belgium. The hotel, which is quite nice, has a couple differences from the typical hotel in the United States. Something that still confuses me is why the toilet is in a tiny room completely separate from the sink and the shower. I just do not see the benefit of having to walk between two rooms to go to the bathroom and washing your hands...
After lunch, we were given approximately five hours to do whatever we wanted until practice. Because we had not comfortably slept for a couple of days, this time mostly consisted of a nap. When it was time, we all woke up and went to practice. It was helpful to acclimate ourselves to the European game. We had to learn some new rules. For example, the shot clock is only 24 seconds (35 seconds in the USA). This is one rule that I don't think will affect us too much. I do not remember the last time we used the entire shot clock in a game.
Tomorrow, we get to sleep in and then head to Brussels to tour the city. We also have our first game tomorrow night at 8 pm (2 pm Eastern Time).
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