2009 Foreign Tour - Tunisia & France
 2009 Foreign Tour
Follow the Tech women's basketball team as they travel to Tunisia and France.




 Tour Itinerary
 May 2 Depart: Atlanta
6:00 pm EDT
 May 3 Arrive: Paris, France
8:35 am CEST
  Depart: Paris, France
12:35 pm CEST
  Arrive: Tunis, Tunisia
3:05 pm CET
  Bus to Port El Kantaoui
5:00 pm CET
  Arrive: Port El Kantaoui
7:00 pm CET
 May 4 Port El Kantaoui, Tunisia
Sightseeing in Sousse
9:00 am CET
  Game vs. Tunisia U-20 National Team
6:00 pm CET
 May 5 Port El Kantaoui, Tunisia
Visit Colosseum of El-Jem
10:00 a.m. CET
 May 6 Port El Kantaoui, Tunisia
Game vs. Tunisia National Team
6:00 pm CET
 May 7 Port El Kantaoui, Tunisia
  Sightseeing / Safari / Ride Camels
9:30 am CET
  Conduct Practice with Tunisian Coaches
4:00 pm CET
Game vs. Tunisia National Team
6:00 pm CET
 May 8 Port El Kantaoui, Tunisia
  Depart for Tunis
9:30 am CET
  Sightseeing Tour of Carthage
 May 9 Tunis, Tunisia
  Depart: Tunis
11:00 am CET
  Arrive: Paris, France
2:35 pm CEST
  Lunch and Sightseeing in Paris
 May 10 Paris, France
  Seine River Boat Tour
7:00 pm CEST
  Visit Eiffel Tower
9:00 pm CEST
 May 11 Paris, France
  Visit the Louvre
9:30 am CEST
Game vs. Mondeville
7:30 pm CEST
 May 12 Paris, France
  Depart: Paris 10:40 am CEST
  Arrive: Atlanta 2:00 pm EDT
 Tour Video/Photos
 May 2   Stay tuned...
 Thursday, June 4
Our tour video is now up! Click here to watch it now!

 Monday, May 11
Our trip is slowly coming to an end. It was our last full day and we made the most of it. The day once again began with a delicious breakfast at the hotel, which consisted of croissants, eggs and a bunch of other items.

We left the hotel around 10 a.m. to visit the Louvre. It was our first and only museum of the trip and we picked a good one to go to. Everyone walked the halls to hunt for the Mona Lisa. Once found, we then moved through the halls to see the Venus de Milo. Though we didn't have a lot of time to see all the art -- you probably need at least two days and not two hours -- we did take in a lot.

Once we returned to the hotel, everyone rested up for our final game of the trip. We had to leave by 3 p.m. because the gymnasium was located in Normande, which is around 2 ½ hours outside of Paris. The bus trip was long but the locals were very welcoming (more on that later).

We finally tipped off at around 7:30 p.m. and it was a tight game from the beginning. Our opponent, USO Mondeville, was made up of pro players and members of the Junior National Team. They were as good as any team we would play in the ACC. The Jackets struggled during the third quarter to fall behind and couldn't make up the difference even behind a late surge in the fourth quarter. Tech fell 75-65 and finished the tour 3-1. Chelsea Regins scored a team-high 16 points and Deja Foster added 12 for the Jackets.

As I write this, we are on the bus heading back to Paris. Everyone will finish packing, catch a little shut-eye and will have to be ready to go around 8 a.m. tomorrow to make it to our 11 a.m. flight back to Atlanta.

Unfortunately, due to internet issues, I have not been able to upload the Paris photos yet so look out for those on Tuesday-Wednesday. We would also like to thank Craig from Basketball Travelers and his wife Seanna and everyone back at Georgia Tech for making this trip happen. The young women have not only grown as individuals but as a team.

Photos from the Louvre and the game

Amical Mondeville - Georgia Tech Photos

 Sunday, May 10
Happy Mother's Day,

Today was probably the busiest day of our whole trip. We walked, Metroed, bused and boated all over the city from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. The day included fun events such as visiting the Arc de Triomphe, the Sacre-Coeur and the Eiffel Tower.

After a small breakfast, our group walked south from the hotel and down the Champs Elysees to see the Arc de Triomphe. The first stretch of Champs Elysees is more of a park on each side of the road. The second half that we walked was full of high-end stores including Louis Vuitton, Dior and others. The Arc de Triomphe is a site to see, it is such a large structure with amazing sculptures.

We then hit the Metro and went north to the Sacre-Coeur. Well the Sacre-Coeur sits on the highest point on land in Paris and first we had to climb the most stairs ever to reach the street level from the Metro station. Then once we walked down the street we had to climb more stairs (some took a tram) to the top of the mountain but once we reached the top it was worth the work. The view was incredible and we have photos to prove that. Some of us went into the church and the rest of us walked the streets behind. We found cool shops, great artists and some delicious food.

Our third stop of our amazing day in Paris was an hour-long boat ride down the Seine River to take in a lot of the sites we have seen from a different perspective. We all got some great photos of Notre Dame, the Orsay Museum, the Grand Palace and the Eiffel Tower.

Speaking of the Eiffel Tower, we then visited the grand structure. We all rode the elevators to the top (they wouldn't let us walk but I am not sure anyone would have) and got another great perspective of Paris from the top. It is amazing that this was build so long ago. Did you know that it was once the tallest building in the world?

What a day, Craig from Basketball Traveler's said this may be the most any group his company has taken has done in one day. Guess what, we still have the Louvre in the morning!

Well, one more day and then back to reality, we will play our final game of the trip in Mondeville against a really good team tomorrow night. It is about a two hour trip and we are looking forward to it. Check out the flyer for the game below.

Flyer For Game in Paris

Photos From Our Very Busy Second Day in Paris

 Saturday, May 9
Bonjour from Paris!

After getting up early, we left our hotel in Tunis and headed to the airport to catch an 11 o'clock flight to Paris. The consensus of the group was Tunisia was a great place to visit and we all had a wonderful time but now it was time for the next leg of our journey.

We landed at Charles De Gaulle at around 2:30 p.m. local and were ready to get started. After getting our bags on the bus, we traveled in to the city to our Hotel, Concorde Saint-Lazare. On the way, we learned a little bit of history from our tour guide. Once at the hotel we unloaded our bags and then it was back on the bus to sightsee.

The bus took the team all around the city as our tour guide discussed each spot and the history surrounding it. Finally we reached our destination of the Cathedral of Notre Dame and made our way inside. During our visit a mass was going on, which was quite interesting. After some climbing and photo taking we walked across the street to the Latin Quarter to eat and shop.

Our final stop of the evening was to watch the light show on the Eiffel Tower. At 10 p.m. the lights begin to start flashing and it lasts for four minutes. We all got a chance to take some photos and even got a short video of the lights. Tomorrow we will get a chance to actually climb the tower.

Well, off to bed to get ready for more sightseeing in the morning. Oh, and congrats to the women's tennis team for winning its regional and traveling on to the Round of 16 in the NCAA Tournament. Sorry no photos are up yet, the internet is working slow with uploading them. Who would think it was easier to upload photos in Tunisia than Paris?

Photos From Our First Day in Paris

 Friday, May 8
It's our final full day in Tunisia. What an amazing six days it has been. We have been on camels, seen a Coliseum, shopped in a local market and eaten some interesting foods. Today has been no different!

We slept in since we were checking out of our hotel on the beach. All of the workers whom have gotten to know our group were saying goodbye to us and thanking us for visiting Tunisia. We ate some lunch by the pool and were loaded on the bus to go by 1 p.m.

We would bus for two hours north to visit Carthage. It is an area in Tunis, the capital of Tunisia, where remains from various Roman buildings were left. Our first stop was a location of tombs. This was a place where the Romans would sacrifice their first born child before they stopped and began sacrificing animals.

Our next stop was the location of the Carthage port. We stopped and took a few photos but then it was on to the final Carthage location, the Roman Baths. This is located right on the waterfront with some incredible views. We walked around the remains and took some great photos that will be in today's photo gallery.

We checked into our new hotel and met by the pool at 5:45 p.m. for some team bonding. LaChina Robinson set up an exercise that allowed everyone to get to know each other a little better. First we paired up into groups of two and learned each others names, birthplace and one interesting fact. Then we each got up and presented to the group. The last exercise was to read a document that we each wrote about what our "Perfect World" would be. This allowed us to see each other in a different light.

Tomorrow we will travel to Paris in the morning. This will be a totally different experience for everyone in the group and should be a great time. Look for more posts from France.

Photos of Carthage and team building

 Thursday, May 7
It has been a great final full-day in our hotel Bellevue Park. We headed out in the morning to one of our highlighted activities, riding camels. What a cool experience! It took us about 30 minutes to get there and once we did it was non-stop fun. As we got off the bus, the girls all purchased turbans from one of the locals. We then each got on one of the camels for our ride through an olive tree field.

Half way through our ride, we stopped at a small fort looking open-air building. In it we were treated to numerous activities. We first met an old native woman who burst out with a tribal call. Then we were all given a piece of cactus and asked to feed a camel. Well, what they wanted us to do was put a piece of cactus in our mouth and give to the camel. Check out some of the photos in the gallery. Once the camel was full, one of our guides asked Chelsea Regins and Coach Hill to come with him. When they returned, they were covered in native clothes and they were actors in a story of marriage. We learned the process of marriage from the dowry paid by the man's family to the different type of work done by both the man and woman. Finally we were awarded with a treat, fresh bread baked in a clay stove. The old woman, who we met before, cooked us the pita style bread in around seven minutes and then we were able to eat with fresh tomato, olive oil and salt. Let me tell you, everyone is still craving about it. Once we finished, it was back to our camels for our ride back to the bus.

Later in the afternoon, we headed out to the gymnasium for a coaches clinic. Coach Joseph, her staff and the team went through different defensive sets as local coaches looked on and took notes. Some of the coaches even asked questions. The Tunisian National Coach was there to translate and explain what the team was doing and why.

Finally it was game time, our final game in Tunisia. The National Team was not going to go down with a out a fight. At the end of the first quarter the game was tied at 12 and Tech would only hold a 29-20 lead at the half. The second half was also very competitive as Tunisia pulled within six points. A late 16-4 run by the Jackets sealed the 63-45 win and a perfect 3-0 record in Tunisia. Mo Bennett and Sasha Goodlett each scored 16 points and Brigitte Ardossi had seven points and nine rebounds in the game.

After the game, both teams took photos together and the Jackets were treated to a small reception with the host team. Coach Joseph was presented with the gift and was thanked for bringing her team over to help the local teams.

Tomorrow we will leave our hotel for one in the capital city of Tunis. We are staying for one night because it is closer to the airport. We will travel to Paris Saturday morning for the final leg of our trip.

Photos of Camel Rides and coaches clinic

 Wednesday, May 6

Hello Again,

After three days of running around, today can almost be considered our day of rest! The day began with the team traveling to the local Port area, where they were able to walk around and shop. After about an hour, we returned to the hotel for rest, relaxation and sun.

Since it is a game day, the team got ready to leave for the gymnasium by 4 p.m. It took us around 45 minutes to reach our destination due to some traffic on the road. Once at the gym, we got to watch the end of the Tunisian National Team's shooting practice.

From the opening tip, the Georgia Tech women's team struggled to get into a rhythm. The team missed some easy layups that usually go down. Though, what they lacked on the offensive glass, they made up on the defensive side of the ball, holding Tunisia to only 12 points in the first half.

Both teams picked up their offense in the final two quarters but Tech would eventually cruise to a 58-35 win. Mo Bennett led the team with eight points, 12 rebounds and seven steals. Iasia Hemingway scored 14 points and Deja Foster added 10 points and nine rebounds. Tech is now 2-0 on their trip against the Tunisian teams.

After the game, the Jackets returned to the hotel for a nice dinner at a Tunisian restaurant. The menu included various appetizers, a main course of lamb, vegetables and cous cous and some dessert. The team didn't love the meal but the coaches and staff and Brigitte Ardossi enjoyed it thoroughly.

Tomorrow is a big day for the team. We will head out early to ride camels. Then we will turn around and head back to the gym for a clinic and another game against the Tunisian National Team. Please tell everyone you know about our GTWBB Twitter page, which is being updated throughout the trip.

Game Two and some shots from Dinner

 Tuesday, May 5
Happy Cinco de Mayo! We are without the traditional chips and salsa but we are not lacking in fun times in Tunisia! We are finishing up day three and it has been an exciting one for our team. We started out with a trip to the Coliseum of El Jem, we had an opportunity to see the area where the epic battles, fiercest competitors, and historic warrior tales of the 1800's were written. We even had the opportunity to create the battle of our own between Tiffany the Warrior Princess and Brigitte Louise The Lion. It was a lot of fun as the entire team and staff participated in the production of our very own epic battle. Needless to say, Tiffany the Warrior Princess prevailed and took home the victory.

Another interesting discovery at the coliseum was our team's new found talent, bargain shopping. In Tunisia, you can name your own price when it comes to some of the finest trinkets, memorabilia, and take homes from foreign lands. You can talk your price all the way down to a half a Dina which is about 30 cents U.S. currency. There were a variety of items purchased from bracelets, to necklaces, to scarves and the likes. There is no bargaining at Lenox Mall so we are enjoying getting the opportunity to set our own prices in Tunisia!

Next we are headed back to the hotel for some real down time!! The team and staff had the opportunity to get some fun and sun time however, the weather didn't truly permit us to put our bathing suits on and hit the sands. It was about 70 degrees, cloudy, and windy so needless to say no one was out getting that bronzy tan. Most of us ended up watching a movie, taking a nap, or just hanging out at the hotel. So then we were up for the highlight of the night......


As a lead in to the light show we had a competition to see who could come up with the best skit using some of the props and costumes that we were provided. The team split up with rising juniors, seniors, and Coach Joseph and the other team consisted of the rising sophomores. The rising sophomores came home with the victory after Nisha Adams sealed the deal with her vocal debut sounding a lot like Whitney Houston on her sophomore album! The rising juniors, seniors, and Coach Joseph made up a very interesting skit involving a trust fall and a lot of Greek choreography.

The light show featured lazer effects, water effects and live-action performances and told the 3,000-year story of Tunisia. We all were given transistor radios to listen to the performance in English because the entire show was in Arabic, French and German. The Vegas-style show lasted about one hour and provided us with an understanding of all the different cultures that have made up what Tunisia is today.

What a day, now its time for bed. Tomorrow, we will be off to some local shops and then we will travel back to the arena for a game.

Some interesting Georgia Tech women's basketball news hit the wire today. First we found out we will be playing at Penn State in the third installment of the Big Ten/ACC Challenge on Dec. 2. We also found two links online talking about our team for next season. Here is the first from ESPN and the other was posted on FullCourtPress.com.

A special thanks needs to go out to Richard Musterer at home for all his help with posting the videos you see on this site. We also hope you are checking out the Twitter page. We are trying to provide some real-time updates on our trip.

- LaChina Robinson, Special Assistant to Head Coach

Check out photos from our third day in Tunisia

 Monday, May 4

Hello Everyone!
Our second day in Tunisia has been a busy one. We got up early and enjoyed a nice buffet breakfast in the hotel's dining room. There was a wide variety of selections, some familiar like french toast and eggs, and some unfamiliar like region-specific sausages and breads.

With our stomachs full, it was time to check out some local attractions. The team jumped on the bus and were off to Sousse, the third largest city in Tunisia. The trip took about 25 minutes and we were welcomed by a large shopping district. In the middle of the market area, we visited a large mosque, which was built by the Arabs when they came to Tunisia. Our tour guide explained how Islamic individuals will come to the mosque five times a day to pray. The special prayer room fits up to 500 people and faces the east (location of Mecca). We then walked the streets and visited the different stores. The members of the travel party purchased everything from postcards to dresses. After our morning shopping and sightseeing, we returned to the hotel for lunch by the pool and some relaxation before our first game in Tunisia.

Everyone got on the bus at 4 p.m. for the game against the U-20 Tunisian National Team. We took a nearly one hour bus ride to play the game at the Monastir Gym. The arena is brand new and was built by the Tunisian government. There is a big red banner over the seats that reads "Thank you, Mr. President" because he was a major reason for this wonderful facility.

Before the game both teams exchanged gifts, with the Jackets receiving mini flags and Tech handing out t-shirts.

The Yellow Jackets opened a 46-18 halftime lead on the U-20 Tunisian National Team. Deja Foster scored a team-high 10 in the first 20 minutes.

The final score was Georgia Tech 77-35. The Jackets finished with 25 steals. Here are some of the top Tech performances:
Brigitte Ardossi: 16 points, 8 rebounds, 5 steals
Deja Foster: 12 points, 7 rebounds, 7 assists, five steals
Iasia Hemingway: 11 points, 3 rebounds, 3 steals
Sasha Goodlett: 9 points, 4 rebounds
LaQuananisha Adams: 7 points, 6 rebounds

Tomorrow, the Jackets will check out the Colliseum at El Jem in the morning and a Tunisian light show in the evening. Remember to check back for updates, photos and videos. The slow internet connection has been upgraded so I hope it helps.

Photos from the second day in Tunisia

 Sunday, May 3

Our first day on the road has finally come to an end. It felt like an eternity from the moment we stepped on the bus on a rainy Saturday afternoon in Atlanta to the point we entered the bus on a sunny Sunday afternoon in Tunis, Tunisia. The team enjoyed an easy 8 1/2 hour flight from Atlanta to Paris before jumping on a quick 2 1/2 hour flight to Tunis. The team watched numerous movies, listened to a full catalogue of music and seemed to eat every two hours. When we finally landed in Tunis, we got on the bus with our tour guide Hamadi and our driver Naja. The two would give us a run down on our 1 1/2 hour bus ride from Tunisia's capital to El Kantaoui, where our hotel is located. The hotel is unbelievable. It is a top of the line resort that is on the beach front and has a gigantic pool. Tomorrow, we will sightsee in Sousse and then go play a game against the U-20 Tunisian National Team.

Photo Gallery: Getting to Tunisia

 Saturday, May 2

The Georgia Tech women's basketball team has embarked upon an 11-day foreign tour featuring stops in Tunisia and France, including three games in Tunisia as well as a game in France.

 Friday, May 1

Pre-Foreign Tour Practice Photos

Our destinations....
Quick Facts TunisiaFrance
Population 10,043,00060,742,000
Capital (Population) Tunis (1,996,000)Paris (9,854,000)
Area 63,170 square miles210,026 square miles
Languages Arabic, FrenchFrench
Religion MuslimRoman Catholic
Currency Tunisian dinarEuro
Total Trip Mileage: 10,590
4373 miles, Atlanta to Paris
922 miles, Paris to Tunis, Tunisia