Tuesday, July 2, 2013
Frozen Pitches and Freezing Toes
Sport in this country is taken very seriously. Being of an unsporty disposition this has come as a bit of a shock. I attempted several sports as a child but failed to find one that I was any good at apart from Horse Riding. I wasn't particularly good at that either but I was able to generally stay on unless attempting jumping when I normally ended up laying on the arena floor whilst the horse completed the rest of the jumps solo.
My girls have spent the majority of their childhood in New Zealand and so have been indoctrinated into the Kiwi love of sports. They are both already strong swimmers and have become keen soccer players as well.
Saturday and Sunday mornings in winter are no longer opportunities for long lazy lie ins. Parents all over the country appear to willingly wake up at the crack of dawn on the weekend to escort their offspring to a multitude of sports events. Local fields in this area become covered in swarms of enthusiastic kids playing soccer, touch rugby; hockey and netball. All the while watched by parents drinking mugs of hot coffee and stamping their feet on the crisp semi frozen early morning grass.
All these games are organised by volunteers. Normally dedicated parents willing to give up their free time at weekends to coach a bunch of snotty six year old's who could potentially grow up to be the next famous All Black or All White player. These people are amazing and their enthusiasm and effort is really appreciated by the boys and girls in these teams. And their parents.
My girls both play in soccer teams and thoroughly enjoy their weekend games. I can't say that I always enjoy getting up at silly o'clock on a weekend morning and having to stand in a freezing field (often in the pouring rain and gale force winds) for hours at a time. However the skills and experience that the girls get from playing as part of a team and the determination they demonstrate when playing against teams twice their size is worth all the hardship I have to go through.
The coffee van and sausage sizzle helps too!