Monday, August 06, 2007

The Sun Shines. The Green Looks Good

I just had the most fantastic weekend in Plymouth, away from all the rubbish that's been going on for me here in Bristol.

My weekend started on Friday night with the drive down the M5 then onto the A38 straight into my home town. Well it's a city really but I like to think of it as a friendly town full of people from my past and maybe my future, who knows?

As I approached Plymouth, the familiar spots appeared on the wind screen, yes rain again.

It didn't last long and by the time I pulled into my brother's drive it had stopped. A nice cup of coffee awaited me and as I drank it, me and my brother caught up on the family news.

The next morning was a bit cloudy and I was beginning to think it was going to rain, after the weather forecast had said it was going to be a sunny weekend, but it soon brightened up and there it was, The Sun.
I was on the edge of excitement all day and as the morning drove on into afternoon, all the clocks in the house seemed to be going at a snails pace.

1pm, 1.30pm, 2pm, 2.10pm, 2.15pm, only 15 minutes to go. 2.20pm, 2.25pm, "Come on you lot. Are you getting ready?!?"

A discussion as to who will drop who off, "You drop me off then pick me up on the way home" Settled.

My brother drove and decided it would be quicker to go through the back streets. Well it would have been if we didn't get stuck behind a van travelling at a maximum of 20mph. 2.50 and I haven't even got my ticket yet. I begin to worry that I would miss the beginning. The ticket office is about a 5 minute walk from the gate and there was bound to be a queue.

As I walked across the grass a man, dressed appropriate for the occasion, started to walk next to me. "I've been coming since 1954" he said "Same seat all that time"
"That's a long time" I replied, "I come when I can. Wish I lived here so I could come more often. I do go in Bristol sometimes, but it's not the same of course. Nothing could be quite the same as coming here"
I mentioned to him I didn't have my ticket yet and he said that I didn't have to go to the box office to get it, they were selling them on the gate. He pointed me in the right direction, well not quite the one which I wanted but time was short and I didn't want to miss the beginning, so I followed his instructions and handed my money over to a nice man.

Ticket in hand, I walked on unfamiliar ground to find somewhere to sit. With only one seat to find it wasn't hard for me to find one with a good view where I would be able to see everything that went on.

There were 3 men sat behind me and when I heard them talk I knew I was home. There is no mistaking a broad plymouthian accent. It has a sort of song to it and makes me smile every time I hear it.

3pm. It's time. Out they come to the cheers of the crowd, dressed in green and jumping and kicking all over the place. Then the man on the tanoy announces the players one by one, each getting their own individual cheer, with the loudest one saved for the manager.

The whistle blows and the game has started. Within no time at all Plymouth Argyle are one nil up to Bristol Rovers. Then two, and three, four and a fifth. Half time is approaching and we are five nil up, but the ball is on its way up the field, towards our goal. I can't look. Oh, they scored. The whistle blows and it's half time.

The second half wasn't as busy goal wise as the first and the end result was Plymouth Argyle 7 Bristol Rovers 3, a colossal improvement to the last pre-season match when the two teams met.

After the match I walked down to the club shop and managed to get myself and my daughter a club membership so we won't miss any of the games we can get to when the season starts properly.

The sun was still shining when my brother came to pick me up and the talk all the way back to his house was, of course, football.

Well that was Saturday. Sunday wasn't quite as exciting but a really good day in Cornwall with lots of men and lots of very nice cars but that's a story for another day.

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