Thursday, April 30, 2020

Checking Out Camarillo in "Lockdown"

Thursday, April 30, 2020

I was anxious to get out of Casa Contreras to take a good, first hand look at the city of Camarillo today, Day LII of my International Coronavirus Lockdown.

But first . . .

I was invited to another Zoom meeting
this time led by Coach Mario Vallejo,
the Offensive Line Coach of the
Tec Toluca University Borregos in Mexico

It was a good talk focusing on Inside Zone blocking techniques.

After this first of two of Zoom clinics today I went for a two mile walk with the intent of seeing how the Lockdown in Camarillo compared to the one in Varese, Italy.

Our local olive oil store was still
possibility but for only three and a half
hours of curbside service

In Varese you have to take care of all of your olive oil needs at the supermarket.

It was still possible to buy books
but you could not enter the store

Varese's bookstores were still closed when I left two weeks ago.

 Mad Max post-apocalypse vehicle?

At See's Candies they had a bit
of an overstock problem

Varese's candy needs would have been met at the supermarket again.

Our local gelateria
would be open this afternoon

Sadly, Varese's many great gelaterias were all closed, once more, go to the supermarket.

All coffee bars in Varese were closed
except for the one at Malpensa Airport's
Terminal 2 in Milan

My second Zoom coaching meeting
of the day was excellent!

Coach Brock Olivo, recently with the Chicago Bears and now the Head Coach of the Lazio Ducks in Rome, talked about Punt Coverage in great detail.

We dovetailed into a fine talk about situational football and clock management.

The scheduled 90 minute talk was a so engaging that we continued on for a total two hours and 45 minutes.

So much fun talking American football with passionate coaches!

We received UW Huskies face masks
via mail today from our friends
Mark and Susie Johnson in Seattle

Susie hand made them herself.

I think we look dashing in them, don't you?

In the afternoon, I decide to take a drive through Camarillo to get a further feel for our state's version of a Lockdown.

 The Camarillo Outlet Mall
was 100% shut down

This is definitely NOT good for our city's tax base.

The parking lot at Ralph's Supermarket
looked much closer to normal

I bought a box of Rigatoni
to cook for dinner Friday night

Back to the Gelateria for a $10 pint
of Stracciatella and
Strawberry Balsamic gelato to go
with tomorrow night's dinner

In news from the net . . .

The FIDAF Tournament playoffs
will be televised live!

The Varese Skorpions will be in the thick of things to be sure.

I'll will miss sports but I get it 

TGIF tomorrow at one of our local watering holes anyone?

The Last Day in the California Isolation Ward

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

It was finally Day XIV in the California Isolation Ward!

My last day in 100% isolation officially ended at 6:30 p.m. Pacific Daylight Savings Time.

I had understandably been under mandatory house arrest because of the Coronavirus and my return to Camarillo from Varese, Italy for the past two weeks.

But tonight I returned to freedom albeit somewhat limited but still cherished.

Before my 6:30 p.m. version of "Escape from Alcatraz" I did peruse the internet . . .

Varese Skorpions 34 - Roma Pretoriani 14

The now 11-3 Skorpions rolled over the also 11-3 Pretoriani in the FIDAF Madden Tournament today.

The Skorpions are currently in second place in the Tournament's four team AFC North trailing the 12-2 Torino Giaguari.

There are a total of 32 clubs in the Tournament that is trying to minimally ease the pain of our cancelled season.

100% TRUE!

During the Quarantine, we ALL need
to desperately support the Fashion Police!

 I completely understand since I'm . . .

. . . quickly becoming this guy
in my Lockdown mode

To celebrate my release from the Isolation Ward, we ordered a Mexican dinner home delivery from Ric's Restaurant tonight.

It was the first time that Laurie did not prepare a meal since I got home.

The Street Tacos were

At 6:30 p.m., I looked out our front window and saw what I had been anticipating for weeks.

Ready, Set, . . .


Well, at least to some degree.

Thanks to George, seen here tonight,
and Edna for posting all of these
signs of encouragement the last 14 days, 
and for numerous adult beverages!

Mike and I embarking on my
first long walk in the last 52 days!

We went for a leisurely two mile trek around the neighborhood and it felt good spiritually but I could really feel the rust in my legs.

Still, it was good, no GREAT, to get out again!

A bit hard to see but . . .

Under the cover of darkness, Laurie and I posted a THANK YOU! sign on the light post outside of George and Edna's home tonight.

Tomorrow, a trip to the Supermarket!

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Another Idyllic Day in Isolation

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Day XIII in the California Isolation Ward started with a check of the internet.

Once on-line, I found a message from Giorgio Nardi of the Skorpions who has been on the Swiss side of the Italian border since the start of the Great Italian Lockdown 51 days ago.

Like many people who live in in the Varese area, Giorgio normally crosses the border daily to go to work in Switzerland due to their much higher wage structure.

Giorgio has grown a good looking
beard since he has been in Switzerland
due to his work commitments

Unfortunately, he believes that he will have to remain in Switzerland until at least June.

His issue is that under current Swiss Coronavirus protocols, if he were to come home to Varese and then cross the border back into Switzerland, he would have to be in isolation for 14 days before being allowed back to work.

The separation from family and friends is tough I'm sure, but at least he has been able to keep working and financially supporting Santa Barbara and the kids.

His beard picture got me to thinking . . .

How much has my beard grown back in
since shaving it off on April 10th to make
for a better face mask seal on the flight home?

 It's coming along but
a bit on the wild side

Not to mention my burgeoning Mohawk look . . .

Paul Petrich sent me this photo
of Laurie and I relaxing in Sicily
back in 2009

At 11:00 a.m. it was time for another
Coaches Exchanging Zoom Meeting

 Our guest speaker today was
Rich Worsell, University of Akron
Director of Football Research and Analytics

I first met Rich when he was the highly successful Offensive Coordinator at the University of La Verne when I was on their campus to talk to their Seniors about extending their careers overseas. 

He did an excellent job covering his topic, "Football Breakdown 101 – Analytics for European Football." 

Good friend Julien Urgenti in France sent some interesting photos of Milan's Metro system Coronavirus Countermeasures. 

Two meter spacing is a MUST!

OK, but why?

AH, the two meter rule again

Having ridden on Milan's Metro system for the better part of the last 2 1/2 years, I see this working only during the Great Italian Lockdown.

In normal times, it is wall-to-wall people on these public transportation vehicles.


Monday, April 27, 2020

A Good Day in Isolation

Monday, April 27, 2020

Day XII in the California Isolation Ward was actually eventful!

It started with a small Zoom meeting at 8:30 a.m. that I attended with Ben McEnroe, the Head Coach of the California Lutheran University Kingsmen in Thousand Oaks, Bart Iaccarino, the Head Coach of the L'Hospitalet Pioners in Barcelona  and the Pioners' Athletic Director Alberto who was in Santiago de Chili today working.

The purpose of this meeting was to build a bridge between the two programs that would allow for coaches exchanges, player exchanges and possible exhibition games either in Spain or California sometime in the future.

An interesting project to say the least.

Another FIDAF Madden Tournament
Skorpions game was on tap today

Varese Skorpions - 38
Cecina Trappers - 7

TOTAL DOMINATION after yesterday's come from behind, nail biting victory.

I was really looking forward to today's Coaches Exchanging Zoom meeting at 11:00 a.m.

We had a great turnout!

I was excited for a couple of reasons.

First, the topic was "Developing a Winning Special Teams Culture - Stanford Punt Return/Block Drills and Fundamentals."

I LOVE the Kicking Game!

The second reason was our guest speaker today.

Pete Alamar, Stanford University
Special Teams Coordinator

I've known Pete for a long time as I had coached him when he was our starting offensive guard at Thousand Oaks H.S. back in 1976 and 1977.

That was a long time ago.

After Pete graduated from California Lutheran University, he started chasing his nomadic dream and became a college football coach in 1983.

His coaching career has seen him make stops at:

Cal Poly, G.A. (1983)
Louisiana-Lafayette, G.A. (1994)
California Lutheran, OL Coach (1985-86)
Cal Poly, RB Coach (1987-88)

James Madison, TE Coach & Def. Asst. (1991-92)
Arizona, G.A. (1993)
Universidad Autonoma de Nuevo Leon, Mexico, HC (1994)
Arizona, TE, LB & Special Teams Coach (1995-1999)

Eastern Michigan, OC, TE & OL Coach (2000-02)
California, TE & Special Teams Coach (2003-09)
Fresno State, TE & Special Teams Coach (2010-11)
Stanford, Special Teams Coordinator (2012-present)

 Pete did a FANTASTIC, detailed
job today and we have already
asked him to come back and speak
to us again soon!

The internet had a few things of interest for me today . . .

A great aerial shot of
Milan's Duomo in these deserted
times in Lombardia

Opening up Georgia again at
this time makes perfect sense if you
do not believe in medicine/science

It should have said "2tonight

I'm guessing it will be "SET" tomorrow night and that then it will be a big time "GO!" on Wednesday!

What will tomorrow bring?