Field of Sorrow

When I go to a pétanque tournament I usually have two goals in mind. First, to play the best I can until elimination, and then to concentrate on documenting the event. And this is what I did yesterday in Sonoma.

Unfortunately, something unexpected happened. When I came home and unpacked my gears, I noticed that my small Canon camera was missing. A crying shame because it was holding a large array of many of the players who were competing that day.

When I cover an event, I usually use 3 devices. My iPhone for quick close shots, my Canon GX7 for intermediate shots and finally a larger camera for long distance shots.

Yesterday I used the 3 devices as I usually do, and around 6:30 pm, after photographing the Concours finals with my large camera, I packed my stuff and went home. That’s when I realized that my cherished small camera was missing.

So today, regrettably I can only show you the shots that I took during the Concours finals.

I know that talking about yourself is rather gauche, but it is the subject that I am most knowledgeable about.

So, yesterday I was playing with my friend Francois Moser and my wife Tamara. Not a fearful formation, but a resolute one.

On our first game with faced the imposing team of Kevin Evoy, Holly Sammons, and Bob Lanter. They won the coin toss and chose to play on what I call “the Field of Sorrow”; the devilishly pebbles and stones strewn court usually used for the finals. I told my mates that I would be happy if we only made 3 points.

As it turned out, this court proved difficult for us but also for our opponents. We lost the game 9/13, but it was quite an accomplishment for us against such talented players.

We played our 2nd game against Tish Harris, Chia Vang and Chue Thao. Another impressive team. But due to the inspired pointing of my mate Francois, we managed to win by the skin of our teeth. Chia Vang also mightily impressed me with her shooting ability.

On our 3rd game, we played against some strangers called I believe Don McPherson, Linda McPherson and Jim Tosio. Don’t ever judge people too quickly. This unexceptional looking formation trounced us 4/13 due mainly to the excellent shooting of Jim Tosio.

After lunch, in the Consolante, we came across Teri Siroco, Larry Brown and Hank Muldin. We faced them with no particular trepidation. They murdered us 2/13.
But beware; any success could quickly become a pyrrhic victory.

In the afternoon, I watched and photographed different encounters. Louis Toulon and his Iron Triad particularly impressed me. Louis played his best ever. He pointed incredibly well and occasionally shot. He was supported by two first-rate players (Mickey Coughlin and Thomas Moua) who would pulverize any interference when called upon.

Their excellent performance throughout the tournament brought them to the finals where they faced Tim Wetzel, Mike Cooper and Alex Cannesse (another excellent shooter).

I am gleefully reporting that the Iron Triad prevailed 13/8. A great outcome for a veteran player who at 80 (my own age) still has what it takes to keep younger whippersnappers in line.

1st place: Louis Toulon, Mickey Coughlin and Thomas Moua
2nd place: Tim Wetzel, Mike Cooper and Alex Cannesse

1st place: Kevin Evoy, Holly Sammons, Dave Lanter
2nd place: Tish Harris, Chia Vang, Chue Thao


PS: I still sorely miss my rather expensive little Canon camera. It would be extremely grateful if anybody could return it to me.

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