My short lived career...
I thought it would be fun and really just a game of backyard-soccer. Bob, a group of five boys who speak English with us, and me. The boys ( aged between 7-12 ) are soccer mad. Well, par for the course. Of course I didn't remember how fanatical and good they are.
We played in a backyard with only one goal. Brazenly I volunteered to man it, thinking it would be easy. Bob did his stage whisper of " don't, they can kick the ball really hard " but I thought, why not. A few of the boys already had a glint in their eye, imagining the ball connecting with me.
Of course Bob then changed tactic and shouted for all and sundry to hear " Boys, careful, Biggi is in the goal so don't hit the ball too hard ! "
He needn't have bothered. My efforts in the goal were worse than bad. Even I saw that, when I failed a few attempts to kick a stationary ball...The boys rather speedily got me out of goal and made me a side-line ref. Oh yes, even more disastrous.
As young as the boys are, they are unbelievably agile, talented and fast with the ball. Naturally they are very clued up on the rules and I kind of put my foot in it ! Every now and then I called out penalty ( it looked like it was and I wanted to be part of the game ) or corner.
Oh dear, that launched a rebuttal worthy of a trial lawyer. In minute detail I was shown the error of my ways. In fact they were almost in tears at my next attempt to keep order...cunningly I told them that they could only argue with me in English.
Eventually and not a minute too soon for the boys, I stopped participating. In the future I will be the one sitting on a chair, a safe distance from the field, just watching !
What was so amazing to me, was seeing these five best friends on the soccer field. They tripped each other up, unnecessarily hit shins and called each other names. But when it was over, they were best friends again in the vain of " one for all and all for one "....Small village living, just fabulous and fun to be a part of !