Dec. 13, 2007
Aloha. My name is Denise and I am the Director of Media Relations for Western Carolina and the women's basketball contact. I am writing this sitting in my hotel room at the Waikiki Marriott Beach Resort in Honolulu, Hi. It is just 8:30 p.m. here in Honolulu but my body and the clock on my computer says it is 1:30 a.m.
Like me, most of the players and coaches have been up well over 24 hours. Most just couldn't sleep the night before our trip. Our day started well before 5 a.m. but that was our official departure time to travel to Asheville and make our 7 a.m. flight. We went from Asheville to Cincinnati and then from Cincinnati to Salt Lake City. I know most people don't wish for a long layover but after our four hour flight from Cincinnati to Salt Lake City everyone welcomed the chance to stretch our legs and get some lunch in the two hour break we had.
After lunch and some down time at the gate, we boarded the flight to Honolulu. It was a five plus hour flight. Some slept, some played games and others watched the in-flight movie or a movie they brought.
The highlight of the flight to Hawaii was the "Magical Flight Attendant." See, there is a story behind this. Two years ago when the now women's basketball seniors were freshman they were entertained by a flight attendant, on their trip to Alaska, who performed magic. He was shocked to learn they remembered him and his tricks and they talked him into performing a few more trips for them, this time on their trip to Hawaii. The closing trick was when he took a dollar bill from Monique Dawson and asked her to write the date on it. He took it from her and folded it four times and then with a slight of hand the dollar disappeared. Oh, but never fear, Monique got her dollar back - however it was slightly damp as he cut open a lemon to reveal the very same dollar she had written on.
After landing, collecting bags and squeezing people and luggage into four mini-vans the women's basketball entourage was on their way to the hotel. It took a while, not because the hotel was so far away from the airport, but because of the traffic. Finally, we arrived at the hotel. We checked in and were told to meet back down in the lobby to make plans for dinner. It was easy and hard at the same time to think about food. Everyone was starving but our bodies kept telling us it was almost 11 p.m.
In the end, everyone dispersed with instructions to return to the hotel by 9 p.m. to get some much needed rest. After all, we are here to play basketball.
Practice is a 8 a.m. in the morning which means we will leave the hotel at 7:30 a.m. After a couple of hours of practice we are going to spend the rest of the day exploring. Be sure to check back here tomorrow for details on day two of the Lady Catamount basketball's trip to Hawaii.