For the past 2 years, Jess and I have attended the Rugby International 7s Tournament that they hold at the Home Depot Center. Words can’t express how fantabulous this tournament is. I mean, the sights that greet you when you walk up to the ticket window with your ticket in hand, ready and eager to let the fun begin is really mind blowing. You are immediately greeted with colors from every country represented on the field that day. It’s amazing how wonderful all of those colors mixed together is. To stand there with smells from the consession stands filling your nostrils, the coffee being made for the fans that partied too hard the night before in anxious excitement for the day’s festivities and competitions. It really is quite remarkable. Everywhere around you has a different accent, you see a different culture around every corner and it really is amazing to the eye.
It really is something else to get to your seat, camera ready for the Opening Ceremony to begin. From the moment your rear hits the seat, people around you are smiling their greeting or they’re introducing themselves. Everything always starts out just right. You cheer on when your team’s flag comes out onto the field, and you’re snapping mad crazy pictures to freeze little snipets of this already fun filled weekend into the memory card of your camera. You’re just so excited to be there and it shows.
And that’s all before the games start.
Because as soon as the first game starts, even if your team isn’t playing that first game, you’re sucked into the drama that is competition. You’re cheering for the Underdog team, which is probably some team like Uruguay, Chile or Trinidad because you can’t help it, you want the underdog to win. And then 14 minutes later, the game is finished and your blood is pumping in nervous trepidation as the next team comes on and by the time your team gets onto the field, you’re out of your seat, cheering so loud you’re sure they can hear you all the way at the Nations Capitol. By this time, you’ve already made your “tournament friends” and they’re helping you cheer on your team because they know as soon as their team comes out, you’ll be right next to them cheering on their team. And finally when both of your teams meet on the field, the friendly taunts begin, you jump for joy when your team scores a try, you groan and bitch when the other team scores a try and you rib each other after the match is over when your team wins (because of course, it always happens like that, LOL) and the taunting wars continue throughout the day, getting better and better with each match, so better that months and years later, you’re still talking about it.
One month from today, the tournament comes to L.A. and it’s enough to bring a bright smile to my face in anxious anticipation of what’s to come. This is surely the best way for memories to be made.
Let the countdown begin.