In a challenging year, one of the things we’re missing most down in the XBLADES HQ is the end of season shenanigans, in particular the trip that sets the tone for the rest of the off-season and summer; footy trip. It's a birthright in every young footballers career, an ancient pilgrimage that speaks more about their metal than any individual award ever could.
Maybe we took it for granted, maybe you don’t know what you’ve got til it’s gone, but here are the our ratings of 5 classic footy trip locations we've been reminiscing about:
1. Staying Home
Reserved normally for those with any sense of responsibility, kids, or a boring job (and a sucky boss who won't let you participate), staying home is the wholesome good for your wallet, good for your soul option, but it's also the wrong option.
If you or one of your mates is thinking about staying home from your next footy trip, get a grip.
0/10 but + 1 for every kid you have.
Not every club can handle a Bali trip, it takes an organised, solution oriented, responsible adult to somehow coordinate a club trip to a bar, let alone overseas, and quite frankly I’m not sure these people exist at most clubs. There’s nothing better than heading to a beautiful, scenic part of the world to then spend the entire time getting buckled. Cheap beers and even cheaper tattoos can lead to one hell of a story to tell the kids one day (just make sure you are the one telling the story and not the one the story is about). Added bonus; Bali is the one location for footy trip where you might come back losing a few kgs, thanks Bali Belly!
2/10 - The amount of people who will pay the deposit
The city of churches gets its name from the amount of people repenting their sins come Sunday morning of footy trip. Adelaide is the easiest of the footy trips to navigate with all the action siphoned into one strip; Rundle Street. As everything is so close by you can take all the money you would have spent on Uber’s and Cabs and put it all on Black at the Casino, primed to either make or break your footy trip. Our hot tip is to head to the ponies, rather than the go carts, as experience tells us not everyone will pass the breathalyser test.
5/10 - Red or Black, 50/50.
4. The Goldy
Not for the faint of heart, the Goldy was designed exclusively to handle two events a year; footy trip and schoolies. Almost every corner you step on you’re invited into a club with some kind of drinks card and the promise of a night that gets rather sloppy rather quickly. It always bemuses me that we go to such lengths to get to a nice beachside location to spend exactly 0 time in the ocean. When the night is getting on, you can always take up Star Gazing, and by that we mean you can throw away money at the 24 Hour Casino. Danger, Danger, Danger. We would write more about the Goldy, but none of us remember much about our trips there, which is either really good, or really bad.
8/10 - Also the number of years it will take us to consider going back.
5. Coogee/NSW Coast
Coogee broke the duck in many of our first footy trips, so it has a soft spot in our hearts. There are plenty of local watering holes to quench your thirst, a hotel use to the typical ruckus of a footy trip and one time Heath Shaw basking in our clubs enthusiasm for the electronic dog track at 11am Friday. You can take a short trip into the heart of Sydney to enjoy their lockout laws, you beauty. Not too far from the races, a great spot to not pick a winner (personal experience) and a lawn bowls club to bat away the Sunday Scaries before the flight home.
Bonus activity: The Coogee Crumb - our favourite punishment, early hours of the morning, the worst (or best) performer on the trip must strip, run into the water and then crumb themselves like the absolute schnitzel they are in the sand,
10/10 - Perfection.