“Let's go, Bears! Let's go!”
Letter from Canada! Robert Brundage is enthusiastic about the professional sports teams at his university.
Dec 08, 2015
How fast time goes! I have been in Edmonton, the Canadian provincial capital of Alberta, for more than four months now and have the feeling that I just stepped off the plane yesterday. The semester at the University of Alberta flew by. I already finished all the classes and now just have the "finals" left, which is typical for North American universities.
Toward the end of my time at the University of Alberta, I found myself getting along very well at the huge university and tried to take advantage of everything I could. This was mainly the many different sports leagues that play almost at the professional level. Students enrolled at the University of Alberta are entitled to watch all the home games of the varsity teams for free. The men's teams are called Golden Bears, and the women's teams are the Pandas.
So far, I have watched Canadian football, soccer, and ice hockey. There is always a great atmosphere in the arenas, and everyone supports the Golden Bears or Pandas however possible. This year the Golden Bears ice hockey team defended its title and is again Canada's university league champion. To illustrate the quality and the level: at the end of the last season, a Golden Bear player made it into the NHL, the National Hockey League – that is the world's best ice hockey league.
“The Great One”
I also watched a game of the Edmonton Oilers, the NHL team in Edmonton. Anyone even a little familiar with ice hockey knows that the legendary Wayne Gretzky – “The Great One” – first became famous when playing with the Oilers, and to this day he is considered the best all-time ice hockey player. After his career as an ice hockey player, he studied at the University of Alberta and even acquired an impressive honorary doctorate in law. Unfortunately, the Oilers lost the game against the Vancouver Canucks 2:4, but it was still a great experience.
During the so-called Reading Week – a week with no lectures or seminars, when the students recover somewhat from the stress of going to class regularly – I visited my family in the neighboring province of British Columbia. My aunt and uncle live in the Okanagan Valley, one of the two main wine regions in Canada. They showed me around the rapidly growing wine culture including tours of some wineries that were very impressive. The wine from this region is definitely no longer needs to take a backseat to the European competition.