Going into this years edition of the World Cup, I wasn't sure how my passion for the game would play out in a city that doesn't know much about soccer... but I was pleasantly surprised with the reception.

It was interesting watching the World Cup out here. I grew up in a city that embraced the beautiful game, and has for a long time. But like I kept telling my coworkers, while most people may not care about soccer, when national pride is on the line, people get excited.

I was pleasantly surprised to see many people in the bars watching the matches play out. I loved when they would ask me questions about the game, trying to understand the flow of the game and what's a penalty and what's not. (I'll admit, it was pretty easy to pick me out of the crowd as someone who would know... especially considering I was wearing a soccer scarf in 80+ degree weather) I loved people embracing the game I love, even if it was only for a couple weeks every 4 years.

Thank you Bismarck-Mandan for a one-of-a-kind experience watching the World Cup unfold. I hope that I helped you understand soccer a bit more, and helped build an appreciation for the sport I love. I know that, for most of you, you won't care about soccer again until the 2018 edition comes around, but that's OK. To each their own.

Oh... and if you hadn't figured it out... Tim Howard is a BEAST!!!

Robert Cianflone / Getty Images

Thank you Bismarck-Mandan. This is a World Cup I won't soon forget.