Saturday, 29 May 2010


What a difference a week makes. Last Saturday we were baking in 30c degree temperatures at Wembley cheering on Blackpool to the Premiership. Today, I was stood in drizzling rain watching my godson play football for his school team. As my godson lives out in the sticks, today was a big day on the rural calendar as it was the Catterall, Nateby and St Michaels gala procession day. Another quintessentially English tradition with traditionally English weather to match. There were the usual may queen presentations (yawnsville), bouncy castles, best vegetable on show display and my personal favourite: the burger and hot dog seller. 
My godson was picked for his team in an unfamiliar goalie position. The usual goalie had injured himself so my godson stepped into the breach with gloves the size of Kent. Never before have I witnessed so many parents getting their knickers in a twist over 10 & 11 year olds playing football. Shouting at the referee and telling little Henry to 'show him inside Henry, INSIDE'. Trouble is, you stand there long enough and you get drawn in to the match and start to ooh and aaah and look to the heavens when little Jonny Clatherclapps misses an absolute sitter. My godson's six year old brother got a little bored with the football and asked if I would take him to the coconut stall instead. What the hell, we won't win anything but at least we'll have some time together. Well, the next thing, this little lad launches four beanie bags at 140mph and lands 4 coconuts. I have never seen such steely determination to succeed nor such ferocity and accuracy from a six year old's right arm. Consequently, the stall holder told us to leave and never darken his coconuts again. 
We got back to the football to see my godson picking the ball out of the back of the nets in disgust at letting a goal in. His team lost, we got wet, we had some chips, we got more wet. Oh, and we had coconut surprise for tea...

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