Friday, April 29, 2011

I awoke at 7 am and began exploring the huge complex that we are staying in.  The gardens are beautiful and our Botany class would love to discover all the tropical plants in the massive gardens with waterfalls, rivers, and quaint nooks where you would expect to find a gnome or a den of hobbits.  At least 6 species of palms were counted and several varieties of bromeliads hung from the trunks or the simulated, limestone cliffs.  Also, orchids of all colors and odors could be found among the numerous ferns and flowering domesticas.  While in the Delta Complex, I found a pair of wood ducks kicking around in the river.  Outside is just as lovely with dogwood, honey suckle and magnolias blooming and filling the air with sweetness.

I don't know how I am going to keep my coffee fix satisfied in this resort.  One cup cost me $4.75!  Desmond was the first to wake and his breakfast of packaged oatmeal, orange juice and cinnamon roll coast $11!  Nick, Andrew, Shane, and Alex must be new to travel and slept until nearly 11:00.  Miles pointed that out to me as he was the next to get up and perform his daily calisthenics and exclaimed, "they're still sleeping? Travel noobs!"  Des and Miles played some practice games during breakfast and the others later joined them.

By the time "breakfast" was completed at noon, we sauntered over to the playing hall for the opening ceremonies.  On the way, Desmond, Nick and Alex built a report with a chess board salesman that gave them each a "stylized" and "built in America" chess board.  It happened to be that our bright pink shirts attracted his attention.

The shirts were perfect for such a large tournament.  I could spot our boys sitting anywhere in the room and I was happy that was the case since there were nearly 1100 kids with all varieties of colors, except pink!  Round 1 began on time and at the moment, Shane is the only one done with his game.  The round is scheduled to end at 5:00 and I have a feeling that the boys will be starving.

I am encouraged by some of Shane's moves after Fritz gave it a look.  Especially  move 21. ..Bxd4+ where the game was scored as 0.3 again.  Shane learned that he should not be so nervous about his opponent's intentions (not all moves are traps) and play more natural moves.
Shane is happy to have his first game done and is looking forward to the next round

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