Sunday, May 14, 2017

A Museum, Tough Viking Run and a Warriors U13 Scrimmage

Saturday, 13 May, 2017:

In just . . .

. . . more days . . .

. . . we'll be reunited for photos
like this one, YAHOO!

Meanwhile, back in California I was being sent a few more pictures from Michael's Masters Degree graduation on Friday at California Lutheran University.

Michael with Laurie and
the ever bashful Jacob

 Michael with
my sister Linda

Michael hugging Mary and
about to be hugged by Jacob

 Michael with Vanessa
and the kids

Mary and Jacob both appear to be transforming into zombie-like states after the long ceremony in the warm California sun.

Great photo of
Michael and Jacob!

Now, as for our Saturday in Sweden, Aiki and I were off at midday for an adventure into Stockholm City.

We opted to walk through
the woods to the train station

First stop, the
Naturhistoriska Riksmuseet

In English, this would be called Stockholm's Natural History Museum.

It was founded by renowned Swedish scientist Carl von Linne in 1739.

Universal Icon for Wisdom

This section of the museum
frightened me a bit about my
frequent walks in Swedish forests

I could see wild boars as well
as bears and wolves

 Fika Time was on exhibit

You have to love these exhibits!

No longer in the Swedish Nature
exhibit, this elephant is NOT

 Neither is this member of
the armadillo family called a
Stäppmyrkott or Ground Pangolin

It is native to the southern and eastern parts of the African continent.

Colorful Golden Pheasant

T-Rex skull

Full T-Rex attack in progress

Who doesn't love a good dinosaur exhibit room?

 The Museum's Copula

We had both a good visit and a solid lunch in this extensive, interesting museum.

 More of the Museum grounds

Next up, a subway ride to the Östermalm district of Stockholm.

 Subway station art . . .

. . . and some more art

I love how each of Stockholm's subway stations also has a unique art motif that is somewhat tied into the particular stop's neighborhood.

We were headed to Stockholm's Olympic Stadium where the 1912 "Jim Thorpe" Olympics were staged. We thought that local college students were having their once a year robotics display for the general viewing public today.

 We were wrong

Note the huge Olympic Stadium's state-of-the-art, digital LCD message board.

The area was packed but with people of a whole different bent.

 Main Olympic Stadium entrance

Athletes everywhere preparing
to compete

But what was the event exactly?

Oh, it was the Tough Viking Run

This Tough Viking Run appears to be a four person team event that involves surviving an endurance obstacle course.

It is actually billed on-line as "The largest and most brutal Nordic Obstacle Race. Obstacles designed by the Swedish Elite Force Kustjägarna."

They were expecting over 5,000 participants today. The way it worked was that every 10 minutes or so, a new group of about 100-150 participants would start their race at the beginning of the Olympic track's back straightaway.

The Swedish Elite Force Kustjägarna's first obstacle at about the 50 meter mark of the race?

Members of a local American
football club in full gear with
blocking shields to bar their way!

The American football players are part of the STU Northside Bulls. STU stands for Solna and Täby United.

The Solna Chiefs and Täby Flyers are American football clubs located just north of Stockholm who each have youth teams but combine forces to form their adult STU Northside Bulls team.

The Battle of Thermopylae came to mind for some reason.


Crunch Time!

Players Down!

Getting overwhelmed

There were just too many of
the runners this time

Not to worry, in just a few minutes our boys would get to take on another onslaught of runners with hopefully better results.

 We left the beautiful
Olympic Stadium because
it was . . .

Wäsby Warriors U13

Well, actually it was a scrimmage, but close enough. It was our boys first competition of the spring and tensions were running high.

Besides the excitement of American football, wouldn't you know it that the scrimmage site was also one of my Stockholm guidebook's 111 must see sights . . .

 Sight #65 The Östermalms IP
Lunch-break skating

Inaugurated in 1906 by King Oscar II, it was the site of the 1912 Olympic Games for equestrian events, fencing and tennis. Baseball games took place here too.

Football/soccer is now the main sport conducted here today but the Djurgården sports club's American football teams also call it home.

Since 1970, during the winter months, the running track here is frozen into a fantastic ice rink thanks in part to underground coils that maintain the man-made ice.

Lots of fun for the locals I'm sure but there was no ice rink to be seen today.

 Stockholm City's flag

 The adjacent Tennis Stadium

Artificial Surface

It was in good condition with the American football field painted in blue. We would scrimmage on a side field.

We had about an hour before the scrimmage began so Aiki and I headed to another of the 111 must see sights that was nearby.

It was at the top of this hill

Sight #107 The Uggleviken Reservoir
A temple to water, fashion and art

Built in 1935, it was inspired by Athen's Parthenon. With a capacity for 18,000 cubic meters, the water tank is supported by 64 pillars that are nearly 40 feet tall.

Aiki setting the walking pace

She is a really fast walker!


In 1989, an art performance titled "Beautiful Sadness" involving 27 dancers suspended for three nights about halfway up these concrete pillars took place. A pianist accompanied the performance with romantic 19th-century piano music.

You had to be there.

And we weren't.

Fourteen sights down, 97 to go.

Meanwhile, back at the Östermalms IP . . .

Our U13s were taking the field
for our scrimmage against
the Djurgården club

I looked inspired by
the warm-ups, didn't I?

My dual status today during the scrimmage was to be a photographer and an observer of what these youngsters were doing both well and not so well.

They did the whole pre-scrimmage
ritual things GREAT!

The bigger they are,
the harder they fall

 Good DE pad level
by Alexander

He would be the star of the day on both sides of the ball.

Axel on the tackle

Pressuring the Djurgården QB

 You can't ask a RB to block
this MONSTER off the edge

Great Pursuit!

Six red Warriors jerseys in the picture which is impressive considering that the U13s play nine-man football.

Djurgården had to try to hold
Alexander to contain him

Alexander ran the ball with
toughness and speed


Our boys were heavy on the running game today, I wonder why we didn't pass the ball more?

Oh, I see now

The defense was relentless all day

Turning the corner

I'd give #9 one
dying cockroach sticker
for his helmet on this block

If we had helmet stickers that is.

Also note Alexander, #74, in Beast Mode at the goal line for another TD.

Post scrimmage talk

It was a very positive first contest for our U13s. The defense was rugged throughout the day and the offense showed steady improvement after a slow start.

We still have many things to improve upon but we are definitely headed in the right direction.

It was time to head back towards the nearby Olympic Stadium to start our journey back to Upplands-Väsby.

 We met up with this team
of Tough Viking runners first
on their way home too

They appeared quite happy with their day's effort.

I wonder how they did against the Mean Machine/Bulls line of defense?

And the steps just
keep on coming!

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