This weekend we had our first meeting of the London Chapter of the University of Alabama Alumni Association. With the help of Brad and Jill Beard, who designed the UALondon website, and Heather Campbell, who lives here in London but worked for the Alumni Association back when she lived in Tuscaloosa, Andrew and I started the club, which is apparently the first international chapter. We contacted the University to get the names and contact information of any alumni over here in London, and then we sent out letters introducing ourselves. With Heather’s help, we got the UALondon website listed on the University’s alumni page, and since then we’ve been contacted by a lot more people who are living, moving, or visiting London this football season and want to get together to watch some games. Unfortunately, none of the games had come on North American Sports Network (NASN), the only channel over here that would be likely to broadcast the games, and the game times have been really inconvenient for us, as well, with the six-hour time difference. This weekend, though, it had been too long; we felt like we kept promising the UALondon people that we would watch the games, but we just never delivered. So we decided that we would hold a meet-and-greet event anyway, and those who wanted to brave the late night game with us would be welcome. We met at the Fulham Mitre, our local pub, at nine, and we were only expecting Heather and her husband, Ian to show up because they were the only ones who RSVPed definitely, though we also had one maybe. We were pleasantly surprised, however, when the maybe, Brooke, and her husband showed up, followed by another girl, Anna, and separately a guy named Peter, and then Heather and Ian also showed up. We had six people! It really felt like a great accomplishment for Andrew and me.
Our Slingbox is on the fritz, but our buddy Kip had told us that we could use his to watch the game live because he was using someone else’s with a better connection. NASN was playing the game at 12:30, but it was going to be on an hour and a half delay; baseball was being played live at 10pm kickoff (our time), which is why we needed the Slingbox, so that we could watch the game at a decent hour! So at 10pm, we left the Mitre and walked everyone down to our house to watch the game. Unfortunately for us, something had happened with Kip’s other Slingbox, and he was having to use the one that he was going to loan to us, so we had no game at 10. We invited everyone to stay until 12:30am to watch it on NASN, though, and most people did; we even had some join even later, and one actually spent the night! Apparently, we were being a little too enthusiastic about the game, though, causing our poor neighbor to come down and ask us to keep it down. Sadly, Alabama lost that night, but we’re hoping the next meeting of the club, next weekend, will have as good a turnout with a better outcome at the end of the game!