The Spring season is always a hit and miss kind of affair, made even more complicated by the fact that all three of my children play. The first tournament I signed up for got nixed because Matthew had a tournament that weekend. The second tournament got rained out in its entirety, due to the monsoon weekend. The first weekend of adult soccer was also washed out by the same storms.
Finally(!), we had a nice weekend, the first weekend of the regular season. Jimmy and I show up to do the first game and... no teams. LOL... Looks like I was going to go into my adult games without a warm up.
At first, I thought I was going in cold to a Division 1 adult match. I was very relieved to see the old guys warming up on the pitch. The Over 40 league game was a blessing. I felt very much like running and gave myself a healthy workout. By the end of the game, my legs were getting a little tired, but I felt strong. The D1 game was fast and furious, but the players were very well behaved. There weren't a lot of fouls. Very little dirty play. It was the kind of game I enjoy officiating and really, the kind of game I expect out of "adults" in our league. My legs were pretty sore by the end of the day, but I was very pleased with their level of fitness.
As Dee Dee and I navigate through our current financial crisis, I find our present day lives over shadowed with sadness. The stark reality of it all sometimes rears its ugly head and slaps you in the face. I have had to sever our relationship with our bank. This might seem like no big deal to a lot of peeps, but I have been with this bank and its predecessors for almost eighteen years. I hate that my personal life is intertwined with business (public) life, and innocent people are going to suffer because of my circumstances. I understand that I have to do what I have to do to take care of my children, but that doesn't change the fact that the pain is very real.
Dee Dee and I drove Matthew to Tifton, GA for a soccer game Saturday. Tifton is three hours south of our house on I-75. We are old veterans of select soccer. It was not a big deal to us, but you could tell who the "newbie" parents were on our team. Travelling 7 hours to play 70 minutes of soccer was entirely a new experience to them.
On the way back, we stopped in small town Georgia to put gas in the car. I sighed heavily when I saw a black man talking to a lady next to me as he cleaned the windows of her car. I just knew the guy was panhandling. I winced noticeably when he came over and started washing mine, without asking. I wanted to yell at him not to touch my car without asking permission, but I didn't. After I went in and paid for my gas, I ignored him as I walked to the bathroom. Dee Dee told me after we left that the owner had given him permission to be there. The man intercepted me in between pumps on the way back.
Excuse me, sir... I'm out here working and...
Before he could say another word, I reached into my right pocket and felt for what was there. I knew, just knew, in there was a five dollar bill that was meant for this man. I pulled it out of my pocket and handed it to him, clasped him on the shoulder and said, "There you go, my friend".
When he saw the number on the bill, his eyes lit up and got wide.
God bless you. God bless you!! Sir!!!
I turned my back and walked away. I expected nothing else in return, not even his thanks. I know that somewhere down the line, I will get my "fifty dollars" back. It has happened time and time again. Truth is. Even if that had been my last five dollars, I would have done the same thing. That's the way I roll.
and that too, was tinged with sadness...