Sunday, September 21, 2014

Sunday in Noumea: Zoological Park and Semi-Finals

With the semi-final round not starting until evening (and I'm not sure if that is out of respect for church-goers, or if they're just trying to avoid the hottest part of the day), I decided to check out the Parc Zoologique et Forestier just up one of the many hills from downtown. It's a beautiful forested park with a lot of birds endemic to New Caledonia (sadly, most of them in pretty barren cages too small to do much flying in). There were peacocks running loose, some amazing pheasants, and the flightless Kagu that is found only here. There were also a few geckos, frogs & snakes, some macaques, and a little farm with a friendly deer. I enjoyed a nice peaceful morning wandering the grounds.

Nice view from the Parc Zoologique et Forestier

Pretty bird

Peacock/hen courting

From the park, I drove over to the competition site to see what was going on, It was still early in the afternoon, and I thought I might find a nice shady spot to read and relax until the action started up again. There was not much going on, apart from a sparsely-attended dance number by a group of cheerleaders, and there really weren't any comfortable spots to sit in the shade, so I scooted back to my hotel and had my siesta there.

I returned to the climbing wall around 5, grabbed dinner from one of the food stands, and settled in with some other Canucks to watch the semi-final round. Most of our 11 Canadians who were competing tonight were up early (meaning Canada dominated the lower-ranks among those who qualified for semi-finals, as they climb in reverse order of qualification). We had some good climbs, but unfortunately none of the Canadians advanced to finals. Not a huge surprise, but we had a few who may have been within reach. The climbing was great though, and the routes were hard. Out of 155 climbers tonight, only 3 made it all the way to the top of their climb, all women. That 98% "failure" rate may seem harsh, but it's what's needed to properly separate the field and avoid having a lot of ties heading into finals.

I returned to the hotel, read for a while, and was asleep almost by the time my head hit the pillow.

No comments:

Post a Comment