Team blog from Mexico: Day 1

Nov. 23, 2008, 12 a.m. (ET)
MEXICO CITY - So here we are, in the Olympic Village used for the 1968 Mexico City Olympics. The morning was still very cold as we arose to find that the hot water was wonderfully hot!  It was great to be able to thaw out from the long and frigid night. We ate breakfast in the cafeteria, seated a few feet away from a couple of our rivals. We all were satisfied with the food, especially the fresh fruit.
Chief Gascon and Marko made a run to the store and brought back bottled water, baby oil to clean the stickum from our hands and uniforms, soap, and batteries for the trainer's steam machine to treat our aches and pains.
At 10 a.m., we hit the floor for our first practice. Marko put Team USA through a well-planned series of drills. The team has worked hard on passing and catching drills, with a real focus on fast break skills.  Today was no different with running, passing, catching and shooting drills all within a one hour time frame.
At the conclusion of practice we had a few minutes of personal time while the Chief, Marko and Edina attended the officials meeting settling all the ground rules, displaying and designating colors of uniforms to be worn for each of the preliminary round games, and the official review of passports to verify the players are all nationals of their respective country. We were also provided with our formal practice schedule as well as the determination of the official game ball for the tournament.
At 1 p.m. we met for lunch and chowed down on the carne asada, chicken, veggies, and fruit. One of the kids in the cafeteria was celebrating a birthday so naturally Jen Farrell tried to sneak her way into the sweets! But as good as Farrell is at these kinds of things, she just couldn't pass for an eight year old.
We enjoyed a few minutes of rest in our rooms before meeting for our 5 p.m. practice. After one hour of the usual drills and the customary pep talk from Marko we were off the change and get ready for dinner. We are hoping to have Tabby join us for dinner as she is arriving from the USA during practice. She was working on departure day and could not travel with us. Later tonight Michelle Fratto will arrive from West Point. Missing Maren McCrary is our only disappointment. We're also thinking of Sara Merkl and Jenny Choi. We wish them well and continued safety as they serve the USA in Iraq.
As we turn in for the evening, we are anxiously awaiting tomorrow and the opening game of the tournament. Go USA!