This evening we went on a family outing to watch the England women’s team play against Serbia in a qualifying match for the European Championships. My other half had somehow ended up being in charge of acquiring tickets for all of the families connected with the youth football teams in town, and getting them into the hands of parents on match day at the football ground.
You would think – being gifted tickets to an international football match – that people would arrive on-time. You would also think that people that asked for tickets would bother to turn up. You would be wrong on both counts. Two entire families were late, and two other families just plain didn’t turn up at all. Given that people had been asking if there were any tickets left, I was pretty furious – it’s all I have been able to do NOT to out them all on Facebook, and berate them for their thoughtless, ignorant behaviour.
I overheard one family that was late talking behind me. Why do you think they were late arriving at an international football match, filled with heroes their children dream of one day being like? Because they didn’t realise the time. Unbelievable.
How do some people even manage to survive? Perhaps they don’t – knowing most of the families around here, they probably pay people to do everything for them – to remember things – to take people to places at the times they should be there – to keep promises for them – to pick things up and deliver things for them. I was quietly furious.
The football match was amazing. Our girls cheered, shouted, sang, and clapped their hands until they hurt – and the England team answered – putting 7 goals past Serbia. I looked across at our youngest several times during the match – I think an atom bomb could have gone off under her seat and she wouldn’t have noticed.
After the final whistle we wandered down to the advertising barrier at the edge of the pitch, and waited to see if the players might do a lap past the crowd. They did more than that. They spent the next hour mingling with the crowd all around the stadium, taking photos with children, and signing match programmes. I got photos of the kids with half the England team – something no little boy going to watch the men’s team will ever have, because I can never recall them doing anything like that in the past.
We got back a little after 8pm, made supper, and the kids (miraculously) put themselves to bed. They fell asleep almost immediately – no doubt dreaming of running across the turf of a stadium with their heroes calling for the ball.
p.s. we have some amazing photos of the players with the kids