Tuesday, 5 November 2013


Friends, Joe and Gail Barth took us to an unforgettable event.  A college football game in College Station, about 3hrs south of Dallas.  The home team, Texas A+M university, played Joe's former college, Auburn University (Alabama based).  We tailgated with the Dean of Engineering, Auburn, plus other staff and alumni and had a wonderful time witnessing a very American spectacle.  Add to this, 'We' (Auburn) went into the game as 12 point underdogs and won the game in a nail biter.  Auburn are called the Auburn Tigers.  Their mascot is a tiger.  But for some reason their game cry whenever you see a fellow Auburnian, or they score, is "WAR EAGLE!"  

Navy & Orange are our colours, but being an away game we had to play in white with colour flashes.

Tailgating!  Tents on the lawn.  Some groups did it from the boot of their cars.  Some even had smokers for the meat. Every tent had flat screen TV's and ample supplies of food and beverages. It is not possible to acquire alcoholic drinks within the stadium.  Hence the need to build up your stamina before the game. We got there around 11am, the game started at 2pm and finished at 6. 

 Photos with random people dressed in colours for the game. The younger two in Auburn colours were indeed ambassadors for the Auburn team.

     Fly over.  College alumni all flying the planes.
     Singing the A+M theme song, to start the match.

     Kick off!

There aren't enough people here!  Why is there seating?  Everyone stands for the game.  Notice the lack of orange in the crowd! Crowd numbers were in excess of 85,000. The 12th man refers to the positive impact that such a partisan crowd brings to the playing 11 (effectively another man in the team). And BTHO Auburn in the stand below? Beat the hell out of Auburn (not very charitable). There were also full time cheerleaders (men) running around the edge of the field of play taking the A&M supporters through ritual chants and choreographed moves.
 Half time.  The A+M marching band; we had never seen so many tubas in one place. This in itself was a highlight, the massed band performs intricate marching manoeuvres while playing complex tunes, often written for the event.
The winners as the scoreboard tells you (45-41).  Notice the attire. By the end of the afternoon (the 60 minute playing time game took 3 & 1/2 hours) it was quite cool.

Celebrating in bottle top alley.  The footpath is lined with bear bottle tops.  The pub to the right, the "Dixie Chicken" is a haunt after the game.  

     Dinner at Betty's Diner, just to round off the experience.

A must on the way home was to stop at this small roadside place to buy breakfast kolaches at the Czech bakery. 
Kolaches are pastries with any number of fillings, ranging from sausage to apricot & custard. Amazing!
So ends a memorable American experience, thank you Joe & Gail.  It will be a memory long  and fondly held.

War Eagle!
Cheers for now,
Robyn & Robert,
The Tourin'Travellers

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