Staying cool and searching for energy

Just had a visit from Andy Loechner, the Secretary General of the International Softball Federation, who lives in Lancaster. He saw The Morning Call name on the office door here and just had to stop by to chat. He's fighting to keep softball in the Olympics. Some sports will be cut after this year and he wants to make sure softball stays in.

The Samsung corporation handed out these cooling hats today. They look kind of strange, but really work. Hey, if athletes can wear "cooling vests," then reporters can wear cooling hats, and these hats work pretty effectively, too. They're in a flat circle made of some kind of foam material. The center of the foam is cut with a bunch of spiral lines, which fit to the head when you pull it over your hair. The spirals open up space to your head, and the angle the spirals create forces the air to move, almost like wind, cooling your head. It worked well from the bus to the office, I'll see how well if works on the mile walk to the velodrome.

I won't be returning home until next Tuesday, but am already looking forward to it. I'm really missing my family and some of the comforts, and my mental energy level is wearing down a little bit. I'm trying to get in touch with Pat Croce to do a story on him. Most of you know him as the former trainer for the Philadelphia Flyers and the part-owner of the Philadelphia 76ers, but I know him as Pat, the guy I could shoot the breeze with about conditioning and injury rehabilitation. He's here to comment on Tae Kwan Do for NBC. If I get in touch with him, I'll be feeling more alert. His energy is infectious.

One of the worst things here is the bathing situation. I don't remember if I wrote about this before (I probably did and am too lazy at this point to look back on past entries), but the bathtub itself is no bigger than a kitchen sink, and one of those two-leveled kitchen sinks to boot. I can barely keep my shoulders inside the curtained area, which doesn't have a true shower, just a showerhead on a hose. The shower curtain is about four inches too short, so water pours onto the floor. Apparently that is the custom here, because there is a drain on the floor outside the shower to take care of the excess water drippage. The first thing I'm going to do when I get home is take a real shower!

I had been looking for Andy Taus, the cycling official from Allentown, who is working all the cycling events as the event secretary, but could not find him since the road time trial last week. Andy came down to me about 30 minutes before this final night of action at the velodrome. He's high in a booth near a roof and said to come see him after the event.

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