2021: 10th International Boule Tournament of Eurojumelages in Bad Breisig
On 28th August 2021, Peter Backes, the chairman of Eurojumelages, together with the 1st Boule-Treff Bad Breisig and the Bonn association, invited members of Eurojumelages to participate in the 10th International Boule Tournament, in Bad Breisig.
The tournament had initially been scheduled for 2020 and it was even not certain whether it would be held in 2021 because of the Corona pandemic. The organizers and we, the participants, were delighted that it did take place, even if with strict compliance with health regulations which were a prerequisite.
Bad Breisig, situated on the left bank of the Rhine between Koblenz and Bonn, is surrounded by wooded, volcanic hills of the Eastern Eifel and challenging walking trails. It has a thermal bath, a Mediterranean-style Rhine promenade, a spa park with Roman thermal baths and a very old stock of trees which are specially marked with plaques. The participants from Germany, France and Switzerland, who had arrived on the same day, were able to familiarize themselves with the boules area in the spa gardens in the afternoon.
For the evening we were invited to a dinner with "hut charme". We met in the early evening in front of the hotel, dressed with warm jackets for the evening and sturdy walking shoes. Peter Backes was already waiting for us and then immediately caused some amusement: he gave each of us two packets of jelly bears and a small flashlight. This was met with applause and laughter and the question: were the lanterns in the spa town supposed to go out at night? Then Peter and his wife Maria led us through the town and up the hill on narrow footpaths through beautiful nature. After an hour of walking with breaks (when the jelly bears were used as "refreshment") we reached the "Schäferhütte", which is surrounded by forest and named after the innkeeper of the same name, Werner Schäfer. From there we had a wonderful view of Oberbreisig and the Rhine plain.
There the organizers of the Bonn association had prepared everything for a festive cultural evening. Peter welcomed us warmly in the Jumelage languages of French and German. He wished a convivial evening, good appetite and wished everyone success for the boules tournament. Then a hut charme awaited us with sumptuous and musical delicacies. Amidst the food, drink and music, people conversed, exchanged experiences and were able to refresh and extend friendly relationships formed during previous tournaments. Finding the way back late in the evening through the dark forest and the unlit path did not present a problem: the small but powerful flashlights were switched on and so we reached the town and the hotel without any difficulties.
On Saturday participants were officially welcomed by the city councillor of Bad Breisig, Mrs. Krebs-Haupt, the president of Eurojumelages, Peter Backes, and the chairman of the 1st Boule-Treff Bad Breisig, Frank Schruhl. The tournament commenced punctually at 10:30 am. The jumeleurs, who had travelled from Switzerland, Germany and France, were delighted to see so many "old" faces. After the draw, the formation of teams was announced and the fixtures of which teams were playing against each other in the first round were established.
We were 28 teams with 2 players each. Each match between two teams was won by whoever first obtained 13 points. We played four rounds. Each time the partners in the team were changed and a new opponent was determined. The points of the winner and also the loser were counted and assigned to the individual players. After the first two rounds there was a break. The friends from the hosting bouleclub provided juicy steaks and sausages with salads, sweet desserts and plenty of beer and wine. Thus fortified, in the afternoon we played the final rounds, again in a new composition, and to finish after exciting games. After 4 hard-fought rounds, the winners were established. To everyone's surprise and delight, the Queen of the Fountains, Elena I, had the honour of performing the awarding ceremony with the help of the organizers, Peter Backes (Eurojumelages) and Frank Schruhl (BTBB).
The first three places were won by Uwe Striegel, Mohammed Abdo and Walter Vorbau from the BTBB. Thomas Rosowski, from the Darmstadt association, and Margita Lenz, from the Stuttgart association placed fourth and fifth. The rest of the participants were equally satisfied with the opportunity to participate in the tournament and to be in this wonderful location. The event concluded with a festive dinner at Hotel Anker. The President thanked the 1st BTBB and the organization of the Bonn association for the professional organization of the tournament. He wished a pleasant return journey to all with the wish for everyone to: “get home safe and stay healthy”.
Finally, Paul Pantzer from the Strasbourg association invited us to next year's boule tournament in France.
Association of Darmstadt