Street cricket

I had some time between checking out of the hotel and getting a car to the airport, and set off to wander towards the coast (Back Bay, as I believe it is called).  The streets do not go directly in that direction, so there was a lot of winding back and forth.  You learn that walking in the street is often the best thing to do, as vendors, dwellers and uncovered drain basins make the sidewalk a maze, and slightly dangerous.

I’ve the definite feeling of being a stranger in a strange land (thank you, Leon Russell).  People stare at me – taller than everyone, white, wearing strange clothes.  I smile when I feel it’s safe and kids, young boys to be clear, try out their English on me:  “Hallo!!!”

Down one street there was a quieter lane to the right, with trees and fewer people walking.  I took it, and as I went down that road I came upon a local garden (the Sagar Upvan Garden).  It was closed until 4:30.  What to do?

Just as I was considering my options some boys waved and said hello.  There was a pack of them – the street was a dead end, and they were using it as a cricket field.   Or pitch.  Or whatever you call it.  Let’s see; kids playing ball, me with time on my hands.

That was the first time I’ve ever ‘bowled’ – I got it past the kid with the bat, and all the kids cheered.  They crowded around me asking me where I was from.  Not a one of them guessed the US.  It was England, Australia, Brazil (???), Portugal (???), and on and on.  Nothing more energetic than a group of kids out of school!  We talked for a while, and then Allison called – so I put them all in a bunch and gave them the signal to yell ‘Hello!” to Allison.  It was a hoot.  They said they were dancers, so I took some pics of their ‘moves’ – and they all crowded around to get a glimpse of the photos, and of course make fun of each other.

My impromptu team

I said goodbye to them, and they all yelled goodbye, smiling and waving.  I made my way to the now open gates of the garden, and then heard a chorus from behind me:  “I love you!!”

“I love you too!!”

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2 Responses to Street cricket

  1. Dani says:

    aw, Steve! I am both insanely happy for you, and insanely jealous. Good for you!

  2. Allison Mahaley says:

    It reminds me of Dad playing baseball in the courtyard of Domaine de Lussac. Boys playing ball is worldly – 1st, 2nd and 3rd worldly.

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