Sport Reports

Franconia by Mark Hartigan

Jun 22, 2011 - In what is one of the highlights of every season, the Senators made the trip to Franconia in early June to participate in the Old Man of The Mountain tournament. This year's tournament saw a large touring party sporting t-shirts commemorating President Nally's shameful behaviour last year as the "Burgermeister". Nevertheless, the Irish Devil was sorely missed this year and with a few close calls at US Customs averted, so it began.....

It's not unusual (obligatory Tom Jones reference for Dr. Harris) for a touring party to share accommodation, and this year your author, in the interests of objective reporting, bunked in with 9 others in the "pigpen", a cabin probably designed to sleep 6. One would expect such tight quarters to encourage consideration, patience, and common courtesy amongst a group of 40 and 50 plus aged men. Perhaps if said tourists were all English, unfortunately not, as I saw, smelled, heard, tasted, and was touched by things that no man should and that still, all these weeks later, have me waking up screaming and in a cold sweat.

So, with a few sore heads and after a sleepless night as we took turns throwing objects at Ashley for snoring, we watched Perky awake and unfold himself from big Rick's embrace, and it was off to the rugby.

Game 1 saw the Senators take on Boston based South Shore, an unknown quantity but a team raring to go and who came to play. With perfect weather, and a solid Senators backline bolstered by Steve Jamieson from Kingston we were off to a good start, and as we settled into the game, good ball was being won and fed to the backs who seldom took a step backwards and kept play moving upfield. In what was an entertaining game, and if memory serves correctly, tries by Warren, Nathan, Steve and Eric saw the Senators win comfortably just before lunch, with plenty of time to get ready for our afternoon match against our old friends, Amoskaeg.

Perhaps it was the heat, the hangovers, or the old muscles seizing up over the 2 hour break, but the Senators didn't have the same zest coming into the second match. A few missed passes and blunders by the Senators and Amoskaeg's strong line-outs and strong back play saw them take an early lead which they never relinquished. As the game wore on and some of the cobwebs blew away, the Senators bounced back but this time it just wasn't enough. Weeks later Warren and Al are still claiming the try they both touched down, Warren with his leg, Al with his stomach, however tries are so rare for Al I think we should give it to him.

And so it was back to the Gayle River Inn to soak our aching bones in the hot tub and do everything to avoid looking directly at John Blaigrove our 70+ social member, with his other member encased in what can only be described as a "pouch" or as the Australians like to say "budgie smuggler". Kudos to the Senators in attendance that tried to shield poor Janet and Connie from such a spectacle but I'm not sure it worked.

The evening was spent doing what rugby players do, drinking, singing, and abusing each other. Dan was severely abused for neglecting to tell anyone it was his 50th birthday, Nathan did his best to show that not all Welshmen can sing, and Darren showed that he has a large repertoire of anti-English songs, consisting of....1, sung over and over and over . Thanks to all who came and a special thanks to those that were able to arrive early and attend the Billy Campbell and John Jones memorial hike on Mount Washington.

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