Mo In London

Travel Blog - COMING SOON!

Monday, July 10, 2006

A Wimbledon Weekend

WOW what a fantastic weekend!

We got up early on Saturday because we had been told by ticket master that the seats we bought were first come first serve. However, when we got there there was no queue (line) and we couldn't get in until 10:30am when the ticket office opened. Opps - so we relaxed in the park for an hour talking about how exciting this whole thing was!

On the walk down I saw a huge line of people beginning to form so I asked the guard who was organizing people if this was the line for ticket holders. He said 'no - this is the line for people who want to buy tickets - do you already have tickets?'
I answered yes, he asked me what court, when I said Centre Court he nearly fell over and asked how we got those? This was the theme of the day - lots of people who WORK there asking us how the heck we got tickets just 2 days ago - luck I guess?

Once 10:30 arrived the finally allowed us in to have our bags searched then we were escorted to the ticket office. The lady took my id and credit card and came back with a sealed envelope. When she opened it she looked at me and squealed 'do you know what seats you have'?
Me - No? (starting to shake a bit with excitement!)
'You have 2nd row across from the umpire'
This is where I think for the first time in my life I almost started hyperventilating. I was absolutely shaking with excitement!!!!!

However, we now had 3 1/2 hours to kill before the first match on Centre Court so we relaxed with a Pimms while watching a little orchestra perform, then we went over to watch the first half of the Boy's Singles Final. And YAY a Dutch kid one - good on him!

Thiemo De Bakker who won the Boy's Singles

Marcin Gawrin from Poland - his opponent

Then the time came for us to make our way to Centre Court after enjoying our strawberries & cream. I have no idea how we got those seats but they were AMAZING! We only had one row of people between us and the court!

The Women's singles match was great - they both fought so hard! Henin-Hardenne looked so tiny in person compared to that monster woman Mauresmo! It was strange at first watching matches with no commentary as well. I LOVE how traditional everything is though - from the professionalism of the ball boys and girls to the dress code for the line judges and umpires. It's great that there is no advertising in the stadium as well.

Justine Henin-Hardenne

Amelie Mauresmo uses mind control to return the ball

WOW that's some power - both feet off the ground!


Sir Cliff Richard (in the turquoise suit) - A HUGE singer in the UK

Murray described him to me as 'the UK's Elvis' - he's been around a long time

Even he couldn't afford our close up seats (he he)

Margaret Thatcher & her daughter Carol - sitting in the Royal Box

she too was jealous of our seats!

Low Five

I WON! First time a French Woman has won Wimbledon in 80+ years!

That's one big plate!

The Men's doubles was a great match as well. I had never heard of Mike & Bob Bryan - but they put on a good show. Their serves were amazing, and the 2 body slams they performed (jumping up and banging into each other's chests) was hilarious! They played really well and really deserved to win!

The Mixed doubles was really fun to watch, although the USA got their butt kicked! It was a thrill to see a Williams sister in real life. I just couldn't help staring at Venus! We had moved up to the front row because so few people stayed for this match. Although Bob & Venus played well, that Russian girl Vera was just amazing! It was fun to watch Venus hitting the ball with all her might while yelling and then the little Vera just blocking it and making it look SO easy. I think even Venus was surprised! At one point I was staring at Venus for awhile (she's so tall & slender in real life - really pretty!) and she looked over and me - I nearly jumped out of my seat!

Venus Williams in her trendy tennis outfit

Doing the funky chicken tennis dance

Vera Zvonareva the amazing Russian!

All in all a fantastic day of tennis with amazing seats. I'll never forget it - it certainly was one of the highlights of my life!

Sunday we slept in because we knew we were in no rush to pick up our tickets. It's great only living 20 minutes away from Wimbledon! We arrived 20 minutes before the biggest match of tournament and got our seats. They weren't AS good that day, but still very good. We were up behind the royal box to the left.

WOW was the Federer - Nadal game great. That first set (6-0 Federer) was upsetting. But then Nadal seemed to get his wind back and came back to play TWO tie breakers - amazing! We were sitting around a lot of Spanish people - and we cheered right along with them for the underdog Nadal to win. Although Federer still triumphed (in his silly jacket!) Nadal really did put up a good fight! Wow is he a sweaty little thing though - this was the first match we have seen where between just about every point he got his towel from a ball boy or girl to wipe off the sweat! I was also amused that the men kept the ball boys and girls very busy by always demanding 3 balls, then they would stand there looking at them before tossing on back & putting one in their pocket before serving. It seemed very odd as most players just take one ball then serve.

Nice hat - classy! Her husband is sitting next to her - he has the green racket on his hat!

Nadal loses his footing after sniffing his arm pit

Rafael Nadal

Roger Federer

Nadal tries out his kung fu skills (check out that face!)

Nadal reverts to his chorus line background

We stayed for a little bit of the women's doubles match. They both were really great teams. Everyone went silent in shock though when one of Virginia Ruano Pascual or Paola Suarez (I'm not sure which one it was) screamed at one point in frustration. I thought she was screaming at a ball boy, but turned out she was just screaming for the heck of it - very unprofessional! Those Chinese girls were really great players though - they deserved to win. I admit we did leave half way through the match though we were just tennised out.

The Chinese could never keep their feet on the ground


And now a few random pictures

Me relaxing in the park before entering the grounds

Me in front of the order of play board with my treasured programme

Murray in front of the full order of play board

Me with our 'luxury cushions' that we purchased (SO SO worth the money!)

Gotta get some Pimms (a traditional British summer drink)

The band stand area

2 Pimms please!

There were a lot of people there - even though it was hours until the first match

The entrance to the private club where the players were dropped off

Our entrance

You can just see the private VIP area - tons of beautiful flowers up there!

My very blurry photo of Jack Nicholson who was sitting near us on Sunday

I just missed him turning towards us - but you still can tell it's him

We also spotted Johnny Wilkinson (a famous Rugby player for England) who was sitting in the Royal Box with (we think) Zara Phillips (grand daughter of the queen)


You Belong in London

You belong in London, but you belong in many cities... Hong Kong, San Francisco, Sidney. You fit in almost anywhere.
And London is diverse and international enough to satisfy many of your tastes. From curry to Shakespeare, London (almost) has it all!

Well, according to blog things - this is where I belong. Either here or Sydney (I assume they spelled it wrong?) ha ha
Just wanted to let everyone know that I will not be posting tomorrow. We are off tonight for Edinburgh. Our MBA grauation ceremony is tomorrow, so hopefully we'll have pictures of us in our robes and hoods soon. (why oh why don't we get to wear grad hats? I have the feeling we're going to look like monks! expect for our gowns are black and hoods are purple? weird)

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At 11:19 AM, Blogger Kim said...

Monique those are great pics! Glad you had fun!

At 11:48 AM, Blogger Heather said...

Wow!!! Amazing photos! I guess Murray was able to bring his paparrazzi camera then? :) I love your outfit too - you looked so cute!

At 12:09 PM, Blogger andrea said...

Yay! I am so glad you had a good time - your seats look incredible!!

At 12:54 PM, Blogger Beth said...

Oh my god, what an awesome weekend! The only picture that disturbed me was Johnny with Zara... they are not an item, are they!?

At 1:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Those photos are unbelievable! I tried to spot you and Muz in the crowd but didn't see you :(

At 1:22 PM, Blogger Monique said...

I don't think Zara & Johnny are a couple? Isn't her fiance best friends with him? They may have just been there as friends - I'm not sure!

At 8:04 PM, Blogger A Novelist said...

Fabulous pictures! I didn't know Thatcher was still alive? Neat pics of Nicolson and Richard as well. Your skirt is beautiful. Thank you for posting. I'm glad you had a good time! :)

At 9:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh my gosh, your photos are absolutely amazing!! You are so incredibly lucky to score centre court tickets on both Saturday and Sunday. How did you manage that? Do tell!!

At 8:55 PM, Anonymous Marcus said...

What the...How the hell did you get better tickets than Jack Nicholson on 2 days notice? That doesn't seem possible.

I am so freaking jealous. We tried watching for you on TV at both matches, but they didn't do many crowd shots.

At 9:17 PM, Anonymous Marcus said...

P.S. According to your little poll, I belong in Dublin:

"Friendly and down to earth, you want to enjoy Europe without snobbery or pretensions.

You're the perfect person to go wild on a pub crawl... or enjoy a quiet bike ride through the old part of town."

At 8:17 PM, Blogger mckay said...

your wimbledon pics are fabulous!! i played tennis all the time when i was a kid and always watch wimbledon. love it.

At 3:42 PM, Anonymous Deb Esmay said...

Murray- your photography skills are outstanding! You should enter some contests with your photos.Marcus showed the photos to Congresman Kline's wife and she was amazed at the seats that you had at Wimbeldon. We are all impressed with your pictures! Monique- what a once in a lifetime opportunity. How many people get center court tickets to both the mens and womens finals in one year? You have an angel in your corner. Loved the photos of the two of you. We miss you. Love, Mom


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