From Abby Doud, Team USA

The plane ride to Canada was almost a little too long; it had me coming up with all these troubling questions. For example, What will the other teams be like? Will we all be able to get along? So man worries! And by the time the plane landed, my stomach was filled to the brim with butterflies. As we drove to the hotel, the team from Great Britain was crossing the crosswalk, smiling and waving at us in the car. That had just turned all of my nervousness into excitement. My roommates that night were so much fun and all off us competitors got to hang out and get to know each other for a little while in the hotel.

My favorite part of the whole entire trip was when everyone bonded and we all formed on big, talented, group of games players. This happened on the very next day.

That day was fun because we all were faced with our own challenges, the Canadian horses and ponies… My share of this consisted of a 10 year old, 11.2 hand pony that wasn’t completely broke (she didn’t know simple aids for go, stop, turn, etc.). In addition, I was the only one in the Whole group that knew how to play western games (barrel racing, pole bending, keyhole, etc.) so they made me demonstrate the game and then I had to go back for my timed round. That was a lot of rounds if you add it all up!

The competition was great though. We did have a minor difficulty while playing. We were playing on a grass plantation which got ripped up, slippery, and quickly turned into bad footing. Our division followed the Canadian Masters, who were playing in their Nationals prior to us taking the field. The banquet was LOVELY! The saddest part was leaving.

My advice to 2014’s USA team: Get out and make friends on your tour, you’ll remember them more than you’ll ever remember the competition!!!