I'm not really sure where to begin.
I've spent the past four days trying to make sense of the fact that the Boston Bruins - a team that in October, I predicted wouldn't make it past the Eastern Conference semi-finals for a third straight year; a team that in April, I left for dead after falling behind Montreal two games to none and a team that two weeks ago I said wouldn't win a game against Vancouver - are Stanley Cup Champions.
And yet, there I was, 24 hours ago, walking out of the Bruins locker room for the last time this season and the only time in the next three months, having spoken with numerous members of the Stanley Cup Champion Boston Bruins.
I'd been fortunate enough to spend good chunks of the past 30 hours around the Bruins, many of whom filled my recorder with more than enough sound to get me through the next three months without them - even though rookie development camp is only 16 days away now.
Those rookies will be fighting for a chance at training camp invites for a team that doesn't have many spots to be won. The retired-or-soon-retiring Mark Recchi notwithstanding, every member of the team that hoisted Lord Stanley's chalice figures to be back next year - only Michael Ryder and Tomas Kaberle are unrestricted free agents, and it's likely that Peter Chiarelli can resign each of them at lower marks than their current 4 and 4.25 million dollar hits, and while Brad Marchand will no doubt receive a generous pay raise, he's the only piece remaining to be signed, and he's a restricted free agent.
They'll be fighting for a chance to join a team that no longer has a history of choking in the clutch, but rather of exceeding expectations and making history.
It's a big change for a team and a fan base that waited 39 years to have that label restored, a team and fan base that are both hugely grateful that their current predicament isn't the same one they found themselves in 13 months ago.
There's no doubt that it's been a fantastic turnaround from the epic misfortunes that we suffered last May. There's no doubt it's been an awesome ride. That said, I'd love to hear about your favorite memories from the last season-plus, so that I can address them in more depth over the summer; was it the Horton trade or the Seguin signing, the Prague trip or the six-game road trip sweep or that time they destroyed Montreal, or something else entirely?