Friday, 4 July 2014

Follow the Leader

I played an interesting game of follow the leader tonight. And guess what? I was the leader.

My granddaughter was to play soccer and for this game they were playing at a little used field that was more often used for baseball. There is a circular driveway leading in from the street, but no real parking area. I could see the soccer nets placed in what I assumed was the outfield, one sitting along the far reaches of the first base line and the other near the edge of the park, in centre field.

I arrived early, wanting to park where I might be able to watch the game from my car. So, I drove across the grass and parked behind the end of the fence that ran parallel to the first base line. From this vantage point I could see the whole field.

Normally, the parents line themselves along the one side of the soccer field, each team choosing an end, a sort of ‘first come, first serve’ kind of deal.

I had my cup of tea and had come early to get this prime parking spot. Shortly after I arrived a car pulled up and parked to my right. Then another car…one space over to my left. A few more cars and suddenly I’m in a line of cars, all neatly parked, sort of, as if the grass were marked with designated white lines.

Look at me, I’m a trend setter.

I’m waiting for my team to arrive. The players in the surrounding cars are wearing red jerseys and from the bits of conversation I can hear, are the visiting team from out of town. A local player wearing blue shows up, but it’s a case of wrong time, wrong place, and he leaves.

Then some yellow jerseys arrive, but not the one belonging to me. Still, I wait. This is where my daughter told me to be. I didn’t call ahead, wasn’t sure I’d make it, but, this is where she said they played.

It’s now 6 P.M.; obviously I got the time wrong. More cars arrive. I recognize one of the arriving yellow team members, so I must be in the right place after all.

My granddaughter is just fashionably late, like her mother. I guess the game is at 6:30, not six. Seven players, usually there’s ten. Do I smell a forfeit in the making?

Finally, there’s my girl, number eleven in a bright yellow jersey. And there’s the rest of my family. Within minutes my car is full of kids all chattering at once, all complaining that they’re starving. Oops, I didn’t bring treats this time. I guess I lost grandma points there, so the promise of ice cream after the game will have to do.

Once the game started I was deserted as the kids found others to play with, and they had a bat and ball. I got to watch a double header, baseball to my left and soccer to the right.

My granddaughter scored a beaut of a goal, and her team won 4-1.

It was ice cream for everybody. I had pralines and cream, a favourite of mine, so it was a good night for us all.

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