Night and Day
Saturday started early at about 3:15am. Woke up and there was no getting back to sleep. Maybe the excitement, maybe this cold I was getting. Work on the blog, soak my mouthpieces (which one will get his big opportunity today?). Pack the field bag. Cancel the emergency 530am wakeup call. Time to take to the Bangkok late-night/early-morning streets.
Walking on Sukhumvit at 5am saturday morning is an experience. Makeshift bars line the street as last night’s partiers and prostitutes gunning for one last trick ambivalently welcome first light. In Cambodia, those for whom 5am is morning overwhelm those for whom it is still night. Not here on Sukhumvit.
I decided on a breakfast that I was used to from ultimate frisbee tournaments in the States. Sausage McMuffin. I knew that I had enough time to get it digested before our first bounce at 9am so no fear.
No Guns, No Worry
The team gathered in the parking lot of the Ambassador Hotel to wait for a bus that never came, or I guess more accurately, one that went somewhere else. So we piled into a couple vans and we were off to Patana International School. Beautiful venue with awesome turf.
This was the most footy players I had ever seen in one place. Teams came from Vietnam, Laos, Thailand, Jakarta, Bali, Singapore, China, Hong Kong, Macau, and of course Cambodia. They came in many shapes and styles too. Old and young, fat and thin (I’m thin and young and insanely fit of course).
To start the day, all the players lined up for the playing of the Thai and Australian national anthems. I was a little surprised at the amount of chatter and bullshitting that was going while they were being played. I was used to Ultimate Frisbee tournaments in Bangkok where when the Thai national anthem was played everyone froze and shut up. I guess if you’re on an army base and those whom you might offend have automatic weapons you are more careful.