South African lives keeps us on our toes - literally!
Today found us jogging around a soccer field with a ball on our feet and dozens of energetic teens practicing around us.
The soccer clinic is hosted about every other month by Mr. Eric. He gets trained coaches to come out and volunteer, to help the youth improve their soccer skills.
Driving up and seeing the open soccer field this morning gave me the jitters! Just a month ago that was me on the soccer field, pumped up and ready to fight for the win. It brought back a lot of great memories, and reminded me that a day full of soccer is truly a good day!
A good sized crowd showed up, all boys between the ages of 12ish through 17 or 18, and they were intense! Those kids didn't come to mess around, but were determined to learn and show their talent. I was genuinely impressed.
The day began with registration, incredible banana bread (baked by Mrs. Mimi at 2am that morning), oranges, and a pep talk by Mrs. Mimi to the boys. Groups were formed soon afterward and each took off the their own station. Those of us who are volunteering even we able to form our own group and go from station to station. So much fun!
We started with a painfully unorganized team (it was our own fault), but it was still very competitive and enjoyable scrimmage.
I handed the camera off the Mrs. Mynette, and joined in the action. It is pretty great to finally have some non-selfie pictures with me in them!
Though we didn't make it through all the stations - ok, we stopped after the third - we got a great feel for South African soccer.
The day ended with a serious and very competitive game. Being on the media team (I took the pictures then), I wasn't able to play in the game, but really enjoyed the opportunity to chronicle the experience with photographs. Mr. Eric, Jock, and Micheal did all get in the action, though, and did really well!
It was so much fun spending the day with much of our team - from the creshe teachers to Mrs. Mynette to Jock and the McMillains themselves. Throw in some soccer, and life doesn't get much better! I know the boys who participate really enjoyed the day, and I look forward to helping out with another soccer clinic when I come back next year. The fun was real.
Our group trains at one of the stations
Mrs. Mimi poses with two of the coaches
Bubbles - the crazy little dog who somehow makes us adore him like crazy.
Wonderful memories! Haven't lost my soccer zeal yet.
Alexander - the cutest six-year-old twin in South Africa!
Mrs. Kitty - my current role model.
Abigail and Zhenya being as cute as ever!
Mrs. Mynette and Bubbles
Taylyn and I pose with some of the coaches
So proud of this little man! He got into the soccer game with all the big, tough boys and did so well!
Micheal and I being silly
Right before the game began - aka, the calm before the storm.
Jock participating in the star-down before kickoff
The concentration is real.
Jock has got some amazing patience!
Love these ladies! From left to right - Ms. Dorah, me, Ms. Kitty, Ms. Malita, and DK
Mr. Eric getting in on the fun
Lunch time afterwards
Photobombed! Photo by Taylyn.
Taylyn and me.
Such a fun day! Cant go wrong with great friends and soccer!