09:18 12 March 2015 New Orleans, Louisiana by GS Jade Barrett; CsbNews.org Correspondent
«You always get a special kick on opening day, no matter how many you go through. You look forward to it like a birthday party when you’re a kid. You think something wonderful is going to happen» – Joe DiMaggio
After 1336 miles of driving, the Great American Bridge Tour caravan pulled into this year’s host of the American Contract Bridge League’s Spring North American Bridge Championships: New Orleans, Louisiana.
Nicknamed the Big Easy, reflecting both the lifestyle and music of the city and its population, it has made a very strong recovery since the devastation brought down upon New Orleans by the catastrophic Hurricane Katrina. A great culinary city deeply rooted in French cuisine, the bridge athletes in attendance will be severely challenged to maintain their diets.
The attendees arrive from virtually everywhere on Earth, our own house providing shelter to residents of Iceland, Poland and Egypt along with the Americans. We have already seen Italians and Chinese, Japanese and Spaniards, Canadians and Dutch. There certainly will be more of our South American, Asian, Australian and African friends participating at this celebration of bridge.
The chaos of the lobby as these travelers attempt to check in to their rooms belies the orderliness of the minds harbored within these bodies, each one capable of making the fastest and most difficult decisions at the bridge table.
As a rule, however, it does seem to take forever when selecting a main course at dinner.