They were playing on three halves of a tennis court, so it was mostly enclosed except for where the nets ended. They also had two people playing on BMXs, which I hadn't really seen before, but seemed to work pretty well. They too, like our resident Florida transplant Seamus, seemed to have mallets that ran on the long side.
Have to admit, we were a little nervous just getting out there, but we got a jumping-up-and-down welcome, and when my first goal busted their ball in the first few minutes, I was mostly able to shake off the jitters and just have fun. I'd love to get down there again for the Duval Dirty Bike Olympics in March, but it IS a twelve hour drive, so yeah, who knows. We stayed as late as we could until the lights automatically cut out mid-game and we had to jet back to the hotel for a few hours sleep and the short drive to Orlando. Cara's brother Graham took a few pictures that didn't really turn out great, but you can check 'em out here.
Orlando Polo was in a rebuilding phase. Apparently, they had a pretty robust club a while back, but lost a bunch of people. However, with a few polo junky transplants, it seems to be building back up pretty strong, not least thanks to Alix, one of the said transplants.
Alix, in the club, posted up with some gang bangers.
Dude had an uber-legit setup - dual pull front and back disc brakes, and was an awesome player besides. Good control, wicked shot, nice and quick. They pretty much shared all the equipment - tons of loaner polo bikes and mallets to encourage newbies. Apparently they had been booted from their old spot and were trying out a new one in a caged-in basketball court. Again, we played until the lights cut out and were forced to vacate. This time, Cara took some pictures which came out pretty dramatic thanks to their lighting; check 'em out.
A basketball court with a slippy-slidy pool of death.
I feel pretty great about the trip as a whole and reeeeeally wanna do another pickup trip somewhere new. As a whole, I think Cara and I repped Memphis pretty hard. Granted, these were two relatively new, small clubs, we definitely kept the pace and pressure up. I don't think we were blowing anyone out of the water, but I do think we were at the very least challenging people. Next stop? Maybe St. Louis. I have a feeling they'll challenge us, and I know I could use one to help get ready for the South Central Champs in Austin.
Between the great weather - not too hot, not cold - and awesome people, plus the sheer number of clubs in Florida, I really didn't wanna leave, but there's no way I could leave behind Memphis polo just yet. We at least gotta make it to day two of South Central first, ha!