Day 52

Day 52

My first game of cricket for the season today (well not me I didn’t play, boy 1 did).

I love and hate cricket season. Boy 1 is crazy obsessed with it and he is an absolute arrogant, selfish nightmare when it comes to Saturday cricket. This morning was no different he slept until 6.35am – this was after me trying several times to wake him. We need to leave by 7.00am to be at the grounds on time. He was yelling and arguing about his whites, breakfast, water, sun cream, boy 2 and I being ready to go.

We got to the grounds a few minutes late but by that point I didn’t care less and was ready to go home. Because you know 14 year olds know everything and cancer doesn’t affect them. So why do they need sun cream on a 27 degree Celsius day when they are going to be standing directly in the sun for the next 4.5 hours!

My boy is known for his bowling and has done very well with his skills over the last 3 seasons. So you know, 14 year old boys know everything so why not change to being a wicket keeper, and not use the skills that he has worked on tirelessly and driven everyone mad about for the last 3 years, to do a position he has never played before. Yes that is what happened today and I have never been the pushy parent, but I mean it made sense to me that if you have established skills and you are in a new team trying to prove yourself, would you not use the skills that you already have?? Mmm apparently I don’t have a clue when it comes to this and my boy played wicket keeper. Which seemed like a waste but, whatever. So I sat in the sun and watched like a good mum. No shade was provided by trees or any form of shelter at these grounds, I felt like I fried my face off, but the wind was cold, so I also wanted a jumper that I didn’t bring. It was a very long 4.5 hours today, because when he went in as the opening batter he was caught out after hitting the ball in the air in his second over (hitting a ball in the air is a big no, no in cricket – unless you can slog it for 6).

In the end our team won, boy 1 wasn’t happy with his game. He now has a headache because drinking water is also as uncool as sun cream.

End of day 52

I am home alone as the boys have taken Val to a car show. That they arrived for at 4.30pm for what they thought was a 5.00pm start, but doesn’t actually start until dark.

Feeling fried so going to have a soak in a coconut oil bath.

 

 

Day One

Summer has officially started for me, even though in Australia summer officially starts on 1st December.

I originate from a dedicated cricket family, my grandfather founded the cricket club in his home town, and my Dad followed in his footsteps, he was a successful all round cricketer, in one game he took 6 wickets, and my Dad, is still faithful to the Australian game. I recall as a child having our television, locked to Kerry Packers Channel 9, to watch every 5 day test and every single one day game, the worst of all for me was the Boxing Day test in Melbourne.

For people who don’t know cricket, it can be an extremely slow game of 11 players essentially playing a bat and ball game, where the aim is to get the most amount of runs, while keeping as many of your wickets as you can, this can go on for 5 freaking days. I have memories of streams of tears flowing down my face in frustration on sweltering days, and being forced to hang out in our lounge room, to watch these tortuous games with men standing around in white clothes, hitting a red ball with a piece of wood that is shaped as a cricket bat. Sounds traumatic doesn’t it. Fast forward 20 years and with this devoted line of cricketers, I was forced into becoming a cricket tragic. I now have two boys who are so devoted to the game that when they play and win a game, the emotion displayed is the equivalent to winning the Ashes (this is the pinnacle in cricket for an Aussie). At the moment we spend about 6hrs training a week, and then 6 hrs every Saturday playing the game.

So why am I ranting about cricket? Because today “The Gabba” in Brisbane, hosted the first day of test cricket between Australia and New Zealand (yes a test that goes for 5 days), and I was there (AHHHHH). Believe me when I say that is a good AHHHH.

I am extremely fortunate to also have a dear friend who is also a cricket tragic – actually probably more than me (that’s saying a lot), so we spent the day at the cricket.

So what did our day involve? Oh where to start…..Weeeelll lets start at the beginning. Brisbane city council offers free transport to the game, from selected locations for anyone with a ticket to the cricket. So we took advantage of the council’s generosity and took an early bus, to the game. This is after mum duties, of getting our kids safely tucked away at school so we can go and enjoy our day, watching men in white, hit a red ball with a piece of wood. Our aim was to grab fabulous seats in the member’s area and more importantly be settled with a cup of coffee, watching the first ball of the game being bowled. We totally missed all of the above, because the bus took the longest way possible around the city to eventually arrive at the cricket grounds (Sounds like a bad start to the day doesn’t it.). Due to our unfortunate bus trip, we rushed, like almost ran into the stadium, to try and find seats and see what was happening in the game. Well, who should we run into, but one of the best fast bowlers and one of the most talked about Bollywood stars in the world – Brett Lee. What a sweet and generous man to indulge a couple of Mumma groupies in taking selfies with him and then shamelessly posting them on every social media site we are members of and tagging the hell out of them. What a fabulous start to the first day of a five day test, where at lunch we went and spoiled ourselves with a glass of champagne each, of course this is after visiting the coffee van lady. Only to find ourselves in the “man bar” as we called it. As we elegantly sipped gorgeous $19 sparkling wine, and scrutinised the crowed, only to find that we were the only women surrounded in a bar full of beer swilling men lined up out of the 18 + area waiting for a sausage sizzle, while listening to a live musician belt out songs from the 70’s, like Piano Man by Billy Joel, and I was educated on the fact that Madonna was not the first person to sing American pie.

After lunch we watched David Warner rack up his 13th test century and New Zealand struggle to keep the Aussies under control in the field.

We had to depart our member’s seats at tea (3.00pm) to catch the bus, the long way back to the car so that we could pick – up kids from school. Oh, but we will be back tomorrow, cannot wait to see what day 2 involves.

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Cricket mum

Cricket Mum

It’s 5.00am on a Saturday morning, the heat and humidity are oppressive even at this hour. I shuffle into the kitchen an addict seeking a hit, hunting my drug of choice

The two things that contribute to my survival, especially on Saturday, are;

  1. Coffee: I can’t form a sentence until the first sip of glorious liquid has been consumed.
  2. Shower: I’m not leaving the house without soaping up my body first.

With the above, the check list every Saturday morning of the cricket season includes: whites soaked and ironed to perfection, lunch packed, two folding chairs, five litres of water, two bottles of Gatorade, one giant tube of sunscreen.

Why do I put myself through this at an obscene hour? Because from October to March, my blond- haired boy aspires to be the next Brett Lee with his bowling; he possess the ferocity and passion of Mitchell Johnson as he powers down the pitch to claim wickets. His under-14 cricket games are taken as seriously as Michael Clarke takes The Ashes.

My Saturday cricket buddies (aka other parents) are a good bunch.

The coach is a high-school deputy principal. He pushes the boys and has a quiet, tough-love influence that is astounding to watch.   He’s led them to three premierships.

Jim, assistant coach, also our next door neighbour. The supportive and encouraging one.

The drop-and-run parents of triplets in the team; no idea who they are.

The older parents in their late 50s . He’s blind with a cane. She asks him every time their boy does something significant, if he saw it. Some days I want to yell “No, he didn’t. He’s blind.” Other days when I have had more caffeine, my eyes fill with tears at I tear up at her commitment to share the experience with him.

The single Dad of two: my kindred spirit in caffeine addiction. He always has my back when it comes to coffee.

The divorced couple who sit at opposite ends of the field and send messages to each other via the children.

The passive-aggressive competitive couple. Our kids went to kindy together and now the same high school. I avoid her by burrowing into my camp chair. When she does corner me, I feel my teeth grind.

Over the past three summers we have witnessed the benefits of participating in Australia’s iconic game. Mateship, working as a team, the art of graciousness in winning and losing, responsibility and leadership — and I’m not talking just about the kids.