Monday, August 11, 2008

Launceston for Crawf's 300th

I had booked flights for this weekend back in February, for Mum's birthday. Long before my DVT dramas, and well before it became evident that Shane Crawford would play his 300th AFL match in Launceston this round, so what a bonus!

Assured that flying at the moment, whilst on warfarin for my DVT, is perfectly safe, helped to quell my nerves leading to flight time. I mean, flying is what got me into this mess in the first place! However, given the thin consistency, or anti-clotting nature, of my blood on my medication, I am one of the safest people to fly at the moment!

Melissa and I got the SkyBus out to the airport, and met Mum for our late Friday night flight across Bass Strait. We picked up our hire car, and drove out to the Tamar Valley Resort for the night. Out in the mountain range, just out of town, we woke to fog covered plains.

Meeting up with Rick, we made our way to the Grand Chancellor to check in for our second night courtesy of Melissa's work connections - only to find the Brisbane players, and various other footy names, floating around in the foyer! Mum got to get a photo with Jonathan Brown - Happy Birthday to Mum!! Spotting Peter Hudson and Leigh Matthews up close was also pretty special.

We grabbed brunch in town before walking aross to Aurora Stadium for the Hawthorn v Brisbane match - basked in sunshine. Hardly the freeze fest we had all prepared for.

Watching, and cheering, Crawford through the banner, holding his son Charlie, was a big moment - we have been to so many of his matches, and remember vividly the young blonde lad that he was, breaking into the team. The 6th Hawthorn player to have reached 300 games, it was awesome to be there for his big day within a career that has made us Reid girls so proud!

A game that, on paper, could have gone either way, it was a dismal display of footy really, as the Hawks chipped away at a decent lead, and then piled it home, to secure second place on the ladder at the end of the round. Crawford's goal at the end of the fourth quarter, and witnessing the full team huddle to celebrate that moment, just showed what a hero the man is at our club.

We joined the Tassie crowd for the post-game function, after Melissa and Rick had a kick on the ground, where a large showing of players attended. First addressed by Jeff Kennett, who talked about membership for Tasmania, their growing support, and took questions from the packed hall, we than had Clarkson and Crawford talk to the room.

Filled with the joy of the match, we headed out for dinner at The Prickly Cactus, before driving out to Prospect and the Casino at Mum's request, for drinks.

This morning we have enjoyed the much hyped about buffet breakfast at the Grand Chancellor - which lived up to Mum's rave reviews - before our flight back to Melbourne. But not before mingling with Shane and his family, Dixon and Graham who had come over to celebrate with their former teammate, and then bring on the flight with Kennett. What a great weekend!

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