The roadtrip began, as any good roadtrip does, with a bit of a farewell tour of my home ground. Even if I were planning to come back directly to Perth from Brisbane, the season would be over before I could made it back into town. Thus – Melbourne Aces at Perth Heat counts as Roadtrip Game #1, regardless of the fact that I only ‘roadtripped’ 15 minutes to the stadium.
Long-time friends A & A, and their lovely youngest child B grabbed my three extra membership tickets and two bonus friends came along as well. ‘Twas an absolutely lovely evening in Perth. Warm (33 degrees at first pitch) and comfortable, with a solid crowd keen to enjoy the game. And Perth Heat monstered the Aces (Box Score – Game Recap). A home-team win is always nice when you’re travelling around.
A continued to be the woman of my dreams* by spending much of the game crocheting a rather lovely blankie, while other A cheerfully held balls of yarn while chatting and watching the game. Crochet is her preferred sports-watching activity, as it is easier to do ‘blind’. This is actually extremely useful to know, as one of my ‘When I grow up’ plans is to be a cricket granny, and spend the latter days of Test Cricket matches at the ground knitting scarves and hats. But not socks, because I loathe knitting pairs. All the fun goes out of it after the first one.
We snacked on delicious Christmas leftovers, B entered the hula-hooping contest and came a solid second, having spent an extended period of time with the hoop around her knees, refusing to give up. Awesome!
The game contained many of my favourite things – incredibly athletic fielding, big hits, widespread disagreement with an ump’s call, chaos on the base-paths, moments of weird/horrible fielding (sorry, Aces, but it was true) and lots of crowd participation. In fact the crowd participation from the corporate box behind us got increasingly hilarious as the night progressed and we started having to 100% guess what was being said. “Well, that sounded like the vowels kind of went ‘eh-ah-oo!’, so maybe … ‘somethingsomething-blue’? or ‘somethingsomething-you’?”
Barbagallo continues to be an absolutely lovely place to be of a summer’s evening, Perth Heat are still playing enjoyable baseball. The between-innings entertainment has been reduced to a few crowd favourites. Paul Morgan rocked the PA all night long. Unfortunately I was in goodbye-mode rather than hello-mode, so I’ve still managed to not meet all/any of the Perth Heat people that I chat with on a semi-regular basis.
For me, this game was about having a peaceful catch-up with old friends and a bit of a farewell to Perth. Once again I’m leaving and I don’t know when I’ll be back. But I’m certainly hoping to visit again before my next round of overseas travel. I can’t tell you how much I enjoyed my nieces and nephews, even when they were having tough days.
This was a lovely start to the roadtrip.
*When faced with a conundrum about 12 years ago, A pulled a Swiss Army Knife out of her bra and solved said conundrum, which made a deep, lasting, awe-inspiring impression on me.