It just keeps getting better!
Bob and almost every other young boy going to school in South Africa, is imbibed with the sport of Rugby. They start them off at such a young age that gosh darn it, the rugby ball is too big for them to catch and the uniform engulfs them. All you see is little legs shaking around in the over sized shorts.
To this day I hear ( again & again ) glory stories of Schatzi catching the ball in school or committing to a tackle. Yet, this is nothing if you compare it with the national obsession with Rugby. A whole industry is dependent on it.
- Boerewors, steak and sausages
- Grill / Braai or B.B.Q. equipment.
- Beer, beer & beer.
- Rugby apparel.
- Big screen TV's...so you won't miss a tackle!
During the rugby season, ardent fans keep their Saturdays clear of anything else but Rugby. Either they watch the game at the local pub or they organize a B.B.Q. with other ardent fans...mostly men. The noise level at these games - viewings can get a bit out of hand, as the most docile and kindly men suddenly start to swear like troopers and scream at the TV when their team has the ball or dare I say, dropped the ball!
Many a savvy wife has organized a second TV ( a nice RomCom beats rugby any time ) or made herself scarce and gone to have coffee with friends. Husbands tend to think that having a B.B.Q. on a Saturday afternoon along with watching the game on TV, is less work for the wives. Some even go so far as saying the wive can just sit and relax while they do the grilling.
Ah, men, I beg to differ: When you do the grilling outside, who organizes most of it?
- " Oh Honey, just throw together a little salad. It won't take long. " There's a half hour at least.
- " Honey, do you know where I put the grill tongs? "
- " Honey, quick come and bring me another plate. "
- " Honey, won't you fetch me another bottle of beer. I have to watch the sausages. "
- " Honey, have you put the plates out? "
- " Honey / Darl(ing), hurry up with your potato bake / salad / rice, the meat is ready. What is taking you so long? "
- " Honey, don't forget to take that plate next to the grill as well it needs a good soak to get the grease off."
- " Honey, honey ...where are you? "
One of the things Schatzi did miss when we moved here, was being part of the rugby fan(atics ) habitat. Of course there are obscure Internet links to watch games, but it wasn't the same for him because watching it on his own is hardly any fun. ( All I managed to remember about the game, is that men fall on top of some poor guy who has the ball ).
Rugby is at times gruesome and barbaric. When those chaps get injured, there is no pretence. Not like in Soccer, where one tends to wonder if it was real or not. A lot of players could join Hollywood after retiring... anyway playing rugby, the men just throw themselves on the poor man who happens to be carrying the ball ( at least that is how it looks to me ) and often a player is sent off because he is covered in a lot of blood or unconscious. Fifteen heavy men piling on top of each other must be painful when you are at the bottom.
Well, after describing all this gruesomeness, it turns out that our area in Burgenland has started their own little rugby league and Club. Schatzi will be overjoyed when I tell him. He'll be able to scream at the top of his lungs, hang out at B.B.Q's discussing the game and retelling stories from his glory days!