Connie Mack sent us this update Friday from PyeongChang, where her son Kyle, of West Bloomfield, is competing.
What an exciting week it was for all of us!
We were up at early to get to the venue to watch the finals in Slope Style to support the USA rider, Red Gerard. Red is one of Kyle’s closets friends and we were there with the Gerard family cheering him on strong – his first two runs he fell, but landed that third run which won him the GOLD! To see one of your friends win that – priceless.
We took a bus over to Olympic Village where all the happenings take place, such as the opening ceremonies, shopping, movies, art museums and museums that show the history of South Korea. It was really educational to understand their history of where they were and how they became what they are today. So many traditions still carry on till this day. I think the most interesting is the way they prepare Kimchi – it’s a unique and traditional fermented ethnic food of Korea that is served at every meal. Kimchi consists of vegetables such as Chinese cabbage fermented with lactic acid bacteria. Most people think it has a distinctive smell, but it’s really good and it’s very healthy for you.
This was a pack up day for family to travel back to the US. Kyle journeyed over by bus to say good bye to everyone and he was so grateful to have his siblings there, and you can tell by the tears that were shed they were just as happy to have had the opportunity to be there for him. There was one statement that was made by our friend Pete Cahill, who also was able to join us on our trip with his son Connor to support Kyle – He said “my Fitbit shows we walked 42 miles in 7 days! We all started laughing, because you do walk everywhere all the time, and you don’t even realize it.
We called Mike, Kyle’s coach as asked if we could kidnap him for a couple of days to go visit the Coastal Clusters, which is located by the Ocean in Gangneung. This is where they are holding the Ice Arena, Hockey Centre and the Curling Centre. With the word “YES” – we were able to take him with us. It was about an hour and half bus ride, but time well spent catching up with Kyle and hearing about his stories and experiences so far with the Olympics. We got settled into our hotel room and started walking on foot to experience another town and what an awesome town it was. It was a bit warmer on the coast which makes it nice for all the walking we do. We noticed something different in these street markets – they have a lot of raw fish and dry Sting Ray. We are told that they boil the Sting Ray to make soup.
We took the bus over to the ocean and walked the Board Walk. As we adventured out we noticed all these different statues and fixtures made from straw, wood, paper, flowers, and other materials all along the beach. As we approached them there were signs with meanings for each one from different countries. The one picture I have of the flowers and deer it stands for “Eternal Light – The beautiful nature – Our life journey expresses the weight of life as flowers, expressing the path as a sublime and beautiful flowering route.” There were 20 of them, all different, and they will be set on fire to burn on the night of Closing Ceremonies.