Proof reading had been restricted so far due to several factors, so please accept apologies for the need for a further ‘correction’.

The Report on Day 5 should be amended by deleting the paragraphs starting “The Alex Dickson team finished….” And “Then on to Milwaukee ..” should be deleted.

We were delivered by our home hosts – these wonderful people – to Madison Curling Club to travel to Arlington and Poynette. The thirty- minute journey was relieved by the Morning Class service by Bill A and John H.

At 10 am teams Thomson, Rutherford and Young took the ice at Arlington, and teams Dickson and Young were at the two-sheeter at Poynete where they were welcomed by a sixteen-piece high school band. Even at this early stage all the Scots have been impressed and better by the enthusiasm of everyone at every rink we’ve visited: the welcome at the door, the stacking-of-brooms drinks of amazing ingenuity and effect, the food. Altogether there is a ‘brightness’  even a sparkle in every rink.

As the coach approached Portage, Russ Brown, our tireless US courier took up the microphone to report that there was a police car behind which had signalled to our driver to pull over. The officers came into the coach and ‘cuffed’ Ross on the grounds that he had attempted to conceal evidence of carrying amphetamines. Russ denied this straight away and demanded to see any primary evidence. This the officer duly presented: it was ‘Sandy’ a Highland Bull – standing about six inches high at the shoulder – which someone on the US side had pinched back in Chicago. We had our mascot back to much cheering from the Scots and a chorus of an animal noises from a bunch of US players who’d come along for the ride. It would be hard to beat this scam for ingenuity and effect: well done -grudgingly! – to the US guys who masterminded it.

The morning Votes of Thanks were called for by Alan Arnot and Alex Dickson, and in the afternoon by Clarke Perry, each with a humour that was distinctive and just right for the moment.

After another couple of zip-of-a-trip journeys to and  from our home hosts we arrived at Traill’s Lounge in Portage to another fine dinner, great company and a powerpoint presentation of mascot Sandy and the friends he made while on holiday. Once again a duo of delightfully musical ladies upstaged our choir, but…..we got our first encore. Maybe this means we’ve got out ladder in place and can now start climbing to chart success. Mmmmm?

Bill Byers, in his typically laidback way hit the right spots and key people – and there were many -in thanking the good folks who had made us feel so much part of the wider curling world. Then back to our home hosts, with some more curling stories going both ways, and nightcap or two.



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