Our third day in Europe has been another amazing adventure full of new memories and fun stories to share. We started off the day with a great breakfast full of Slovenian meats and cheeses, muesli, fresh fruit and some of the best coffee around. This was the fuel we needed for our next adventure: a ropes course on top of a mountain.
Our hotel is located at the base of a ski resort and in the warmer months they use the ski resort for a lot of summer time activities like downhill mountain biking, hiking and a ropes course! The ropes course consisted of two challenges: climb to the top of a tall tree pole where you then must stand with two feet on the very top, turn around and then jump off. This was extremely hard as both feet barely fit on the top of the trunk and when you did make it to the top the pole would sway back and forth. It was amazing to see our teammates conquer their fears and fight through the mental battle of being 40 feet high with the support of the entire team below cheering them on!
Our second challenge was to hoist up a teammate via a rope pulley system where she could then pull a rope and swing back down to the ground. This require a lot of teamwork and focus as you needed to all work together to pull up your teammate and not let her drop too early.
We finished off this amazing experience with a delicious lunch cooked by a lovely Slovenian couple. You may ask, “How did you get back down the mountain?” We returned by riding down on a steel toboggan that felt like a mini roller coaster.
After that we played another great match against the Maribor Women’s Team comprised of many women who play on level 1 European pro teams. They were an exceptional team and we played a great five-set match with them. You could see our level of play continue to rise each rally and it was yet another great growing experience for our team.
Duke vs. Maribor Women's Team Stat Leaders:
Emily Sklar: 17 kills, 9 digs, 3 SA
Chelsea Cook: 16 kills, 13 BA, 2 BS
Jeme Obeime: 14 kills, 5 BA, 1 BS
Maggie Deichmeister: 17 assists, 7 digs
Christina Vucich: 11 assists, 5 BA
Kelsey Williams: 10 assists
Ali McCurdy: 18 digs, 2 SA
We finished off the day with an incredible dinner on top of a mountain 30 minutes outside the city of Maribor. The views were spectacular and you must see our pictures that we will post. The family that hosted us was incredibly kind, warm and welcoming as well as a great example of the overall hospitality we have been shown by everyone here in Slovenia. This will be an experience we will never forget.
Our adventures tomorrow take us to Bled, Slovenia where we will be hiking, rowing a boat in a lake and doing more beautiful sight seeing. I can’t wait to tell you all about it so stay tuned!