Monday, June 14, 2010

World Cup Opening and weekend fun

I have too many things to write about and I don’t know where to start. My mind is full of thoughts and confusions and big things and I’m feeling a little unsettled, but I think I’ll stick to telling you about my weekend, which was full-to-overflowing!

Friday. Well, if there’s one way to pull a country together into frenzied excitement that could electrify an entire nation for a month – throw a World Cup Soccer event. It was incredible. I headed into the city to watch the opening at G’s work, on a big screen. In my (very bright) yellow Bafana Bafana t-shirt. Yellow is not my colour, but supporting one’s team is far more important than any possible fashion faux pas.

Every car we passed and person we saw on our way in had some sort of South African garment on. And everybody was grinning at each other. At G’s work, where I have never been before, I was welcomed with a beer and we settled in to watch. I met her boss, his lovely boyfriend, some others. Ad people. I’d heard it before, but I’d never seen it. Ad people really do run on ego. That’s another story though, we were all there for The Big Opening and The Game, and it was fabulous.

We watched the first half, then clamboured into the car to head to the stadium for match 2, and the opening match in The City Beneath the Mountain. Our boys scored while we were stopped at a red robot, and the swell of pride, and roar of excitement on The Grand Parade nearly washed us out of the car.

And then… our stadium. Prepare yourselves, I’m going to gush. It is, honestly, beautiful. Slickly designed, spacious, and gorgeous. I don’t normally get gushy about buildings, but this one, well, she is pretty as a picture. I am smitten. Perhaps it was the other 64 099 people there, all grinning at each other, blowing vuvuzelas, and generally filling the place with an incredible vibe, but I think perhaps it is a beautiful design too.

So the food stands were a bit unorganised, and the hotdog rolls came in a choice of ‘frozen’ or ‘cold’, it was their first time, teething troubles are to be expected, even cold hot dogs didn’t detract from the grinning and the frenzied vuvuzela-blowing. Then there they were, the Urugauains, and the French, on the gorgeous green field, singing their anthems and opening the World Cup for us, here. The crowd went wild.

My best part (remember I’m not the hugest sports fan): Thierry Henry spent a good half an hour in the second half warming up, 100 metres from me. Yes, that’s right, one hundred metres. The cameras don’t lie, the man has one hell of a cute tushie.

The rest of my weekend will have to be another post, I must do some Real Work. It involved getting out of the city, to some open blue sky and a pretty little town where we drank with the locals, watched more sport (okay, I admit, I read my book, but I was still there) and made friends with a guy called Koos.

Tonight I’ll be popping over to my new crush, Green Point Stadium, to watch the pretty Italian boys come up against the Paraguains.

I’m a lucky, lucky Shiny, aren’t I?

1 comment:

Angela said...

Definitely a lucky Shiny! And yeah, the spirit of the Cup is pouring over to us across the Mediterranean Sea! Everybody here is smiling, too (especially after the Germans won their first match, but anyhow). I love your enthusiasm!