During the summer we like to get the neighborhood together for a weekly game of kickball. There is a place in the hood that has a field for horse riding and a field for baseball. Apparently the fire fighters used to have baseball games there but had to quit because neighbors complained that they were too loud.
Last year Caren and I got the idea to resurrect the field with games again. Her Man cut bases from plywood and Caren and I invited neighbors and anyone else we thought might enjoy playing with their friends and kids. It’s very relaxed. No score keeping. (Not because we don’t like competition but because we lose track…) Everyone gets to kick and then we switch out and in fields. Typically we play kids against adults and it’s assumed the kids win. I mean, they have a lot more players and so a lot more kickers. That’s my excuse anyway.
Tonight was a particularly good night! For one we had a great range of ages with kids ranging from kindergarten to high school. The Littles love the help and encouragement from the Bigs. They think they are so cool because they have Big Kids for friends and team mates. We won’t discuss the age range of the parents….
First we played kids vs parents and then we switched it up and played guys vs. girls. There was a lot of “Boys Rule! Girls Drool!” being chanted.
“Hey Mom!” Bug shouted. “Watch me play my bongos!” he turned his back to me and the other ladies, bent over and beat on his bum.
One fun element was that My Man would not put his beer down even while playing. We were all impressed to see him catch the ball one handed, throw out a player and all with out spilling a drop of beer. Those are some mad skills! In one play he had kicked and ran to first (with his beer). The next player kicked and he ran to 2nd, then 3rd. He was headed home but then realized he wasn’t going to make it so he made a quick switch back to 3rd but found the base player had the ball. He switched back to home and was pegged out. All while holding his beer AND with out spilling it! We all thought he deserved some sort of recognition for that! He certainly gained all of our respect and admiration.
Later in the night Buddy got up to kick and he had a sandwich in his hand. We all laughed at how he was trying to play like his Daddy. He kicked, he ran and then the pitcher pegged him with the ball, knocking his sandwich to the ground! OH it was so sad! And funny!
“Well,” one of the Ladies said, “I’m sure it takes some practice to hone the skills that Man has.”
It was just such a good time! Everyone brings out some vittles and bevvies to share. One of the mom’s told me that her son was looking forward to playing all day! Another boy lost a tooth while playing outfield. (It was loose already and reportedly “just fell out.”) The kids all love my dance moves when I’m preparing to kick. (Pfft.) They don’t but I DO!!! The grass is a little tall and so some of the dad’s are thinking of meeting out there with their push mowers one day and just cranking it out together.
There were moments that a Hollywood screen writer could not have done better. Like when the neighbor boy, who lives behind the field and is a very good athlete, seemed to appear out of no where, wading through the tall grass in the out field. Everyone cheered his name, happy that he came out to join us! Watching little Bug pout on the bench because he got “out.” Again. He sat there with his legs dangling, arms crossed across his chest, lips puckered out and looking down at his feet. We couldn’t hear what he was saying but could see his pooched out lips moving as he complained to no one but himself. A little rain fell for a bit. The sun was still out so the rain looked all glittery and refreshed us all as we were hot from playing. There was a spotted fawn in the outfield that took off once she was outed. Just lovely little moments that I hope my children will remember forever!
I encourage everyone to organize something fun like this with their neighbors. This makes great memories! It’s a great way to get to know each other and keep in touch. The kids love seeing each other as they are missing one another at school and on bus rides. The Littles learn from the Bigs and the Bigs get good practice with the Littles. Just good wholesome stuff!
I love my mountain hood!