photography, friends, fun, perseverance, storms, weather, Florida landmarks, a second look, Home Team, second chances, brainstorms, hockey

Instant replay…

The stage was set. Adirondack chairs in place. The tantalizing aromas of all the various restaurants made it hard to choose just one. Which is why my plan was to get a little something from a few of them, in the interests of providing a fair and balanced report on the festivities. Our first stop was the Brew Pub, where my friend quickly spotted a beer he liked and hadn’t had for a while. You can wander with your drinks, so we headed over to Blush, the wine bar that offered frozen sangria. After I’d seen a photo of that online I knew I had to have one. It didn’t disappoint.

You might think that I had noticed the dark clouds in the background as I took this picture, but I was way too focused on enjoying my drink for that to happen.
Honey feta dip…
After nibbling on honey feta dip and chicken parm meatballs we settled into our camping chairs to enjoy the game.
There were umbrella covered picnic tables to the right and left of the screen, and playground equipment to keep the kids busy. But shortly after we settled in we got a severe thunderstorm warning on our phones. The first time I was here all I paid attention to was the sky, but until that moment I hadn’t noticed the sky at all this time.
A few fat drops of rain fell, and we decided not to leave quite yet. But when we saw lightning we decided that maybe we should head home and enjoy a front row seat to the game from there.

You will see this post on Saturday morning, and on Saturday evening we will have an opportunity to have an instant replay of this particular adventure. Hopefully the Lightning will win this time, and the storms will not materialize to keep us from sampling more of the tempting treats available. Rest assured, I see another frozen sangria in my future…

a second look, attention to detail, friends, fun, hockey, kids, making memories, old dogs new tricks, perseverance, photography, technology

Those photo ops…

I’ve already admitted that I have never been a fan of hockey. It just never seemed to be on the TV growing up, or since. But now that I have a friend who’s favorite sport is hockey it seems I may be making up for a lifetime of not watching it. Which might not have been a particularly welcome change if not for the fact that I am happiest with a camera in my hands. If there is one thing that going to a hockey game will give you it’s photo ops galore. The action never stops. You don’t have to wait for a bird to turn its head, or hold your breath while you try to will the sunrise or sunset colors to develop. Nope, there is something going on all the time, and so you may leave the game with 608 pictures in your camera. Or over 1000 as one of the group said she took. And, thanks to the group, we discovered that the upstairs view isn’t covered with netting except on the ends in range of the goals. So the center is open, no scuff marks on the glass or netting to shoot through. And there’s a bar, and a place to sit with a beer to watch the game and shoot pictures. Warmer too! I think I’m becoming a fan.

The puck drops are irresistible as a photo ops. It’s about the only time they stand still, and the hope is to get the puck in your shot. If you can see the logo on the puck all the better!
Blocked that shot.
There is a puck in the goalie’s mitt. One of the group with a really great camera managed to catch a shot of the puck as it entered the glove. I came very close to missing this shot.
Focusing on the goalie usually results in a tangle of people. This was a lucky shot from up high.
I liked seeing the kicked-up ice in this shot.
Defense!
Unfortunately our home team’s goalie let a few of these shots get through and we lost the game.
Lots of action all the time.

I do wonder how I would have felt if my son had wanted to play hockey when he was little. All the contact and shoving each other that goes on, and of course the fights, would have bothered me. But then they do all shake hands after the game, I guess I would have had to concentrate on that.

adventure, Amazing artwork, exploring new places, Florida landmarks, friends, fun, hockey, perseverance, photography

Amalie Arena…

My first trip to Amalie Arena was on Thursday night, and the occasion was the first preseason game of the year. My tour guide told me that there would be murals, and we looked for them before the game started. And the statues. And we people-watched and had a beer at the Cigar City Brewing Company while we waited to go in. It was a fun place to kill time.

Phil Esposito. I remembered the name, much to my friend’s surprise, but I had no idea that he was responsible for bringing hockey to Tampa.
The cup, of course.
I was told that ordinarily the area outside the arena would be packed with people. It was pleasantly busy while we enjoyed a beer.
They honor their players well here.
I liked these murals also.
The caption of the team.
When my friend saw the hockey bag he knew that this kid would be the one to skate around the arena to rev up the crowd before the first puck drop. So I got behind a plant and took a picture.
The Lightning Bug, beating the drum to count down the seconds until the doors opened and the season began.
Championship flags…
And here’s our skater, doing a good job of getting the crowd excited.
And this little cutie pushed the button for the first puck drop.

I enjoyed the whole experience. The music they played, the fans dancing in their seats, all shown on the Jumbotron. It probably is something that all the arenas do to entertain their crowds, but it was all new to me and I had fun. It would have been better if the Lightning had won the game, but they didn’t.