Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Volleyball Game #2 -- Columbus (away)

We had a good match last night.

The trip to Columbus went off without a hitch, other than the fact that my husband sat waiting for us at the McDonald's on 116th Street in Fishers at the I-69 interchange instead of the McDonald's at 96th Street in Fishers at the I-69 interchange. We managed to rectify this problem without too much irritated bickering.

It was a beautiful afternoon for a drive. Our directions were very clear. Aisling had packed the little cooler with some turkey sandwiches, and we were all set. I was driving because I have nerves of steel when it comes to interstate driving during rush hour (my husband once looked at me, his eyes wide and said, "You drive like a dude," which was a high compliment from someone who thinks that he drives better than everyone else in the world, including Jeff Gordon.) My basic method is to get in the fast lane and put my foot down, which I did, only causing my husband to close his eyes and blanch in terror twice.

The gym of our opponents, the Columbus Inferno, was a very nice one. I sat in the bleachers with all the other volleyball moms, as pleasant a group of ladies as you could ever hope to meet.

Our junior varsity girls took the floor at 6:00 and from the first return, it was obvious that the two teams were well-matched. The score went up and down, favoring first one team and then the other. We finally won the first game, to much cheering from the moms.

The second game went the same way, up and down, up and down, and the JV Inferno won that one.

The tie-breaker is played to fifteen points. The Inferno emerged victorious and thus took the match, but our junior varisty played SO well. The coaches were very pleased with them, and in spite of the loss, the girls seemed pleased with themselves. We saw very little of that business we saw far too often last season, which is the ball falling with a dismal thud while the players all stand around and look at each other: "Was that mine? Was I supposed to get that? No, that was yours. You were supposed to get it."

That's the kind of thing that makes the coaches go pop-eyed as they try to restrain themselves from saying things that will make the girls cry. The JV head coach, whose name is Kevin, gloomily says, "I've coached boys and I've coached girls and girls are a million times harder." If you tell a group of boys on a team that their playing stinks and that they need to get their heads in the game, the boys apparently respond by saying, "You got it, coach." The teenage girls respond by crying, because you've hurt their feelings by (justifiably) criticizing their level of play and insulted their heads into the bargain. I mean, can't you see that they've taken extra trouble to arrange their headbands, ponytail scrunchies and team-color-coordinating ribbons, coach? What is wrong with their heads? Sheeeesh, lighten up already and pass the tissues.

So last night's match was great fun. We didn't get home until 10:00 p.m., which meant that we had been gone from the house almost twelve hours yesterday, so the tiredness factor was urgent and compelling. We all took showers and fell into bed with actual blankies pulled over us; my husband got up in the middle of the night and put a second blanket on us and it felt so gooood.

I could grow used to these cooler temperatures.

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