I was super-excited to head out to Melbourne Ballpark and see a game.
I was not super-excited to navigate my way through the inner suburbs of Melbourne to find Ms L’s place, but surprisingly managed to pull it off. It was after this trip that I finally gave in to Google’s intrusive need to know everything about my life in order to have a voice telling me where to go, rather than having to pull over and consult the map.
A surprisingly quick trip later found us at Melbourne Ballpark. I say surprising, because on the map it looks like quite a distance and it’s half an hour on the train from the centre of the city to the nearest train station, but I found myself turning off the highway before I’d even really settled in for the drive.
L and I ambled around the outside of the building and I went for a trot around the mini-diamond under the watchful gaze of giant player posters.
We wandered through the corridor and found a spot in the sun on the first base side and considered our delicious picnic. I was very much hoping to meet some of the baseball twitter and facebook people. Luckily (for me) the crowd was reasonably small and my mobile data was working, so I did meet most people. Except for Stuart, who was apparently one row back from me, but didn’t say hi. 😦 (You’re forgiven.)
The rest of the day passed in almost a blur. There was a baseball game, but there was also a lot of talking. And quite a few selfies! We happened to be there for the Aces Beach Day, so there were many beach-themed activities happening in the innings breaks. Water fights, beachballs, etc. I can’t think why I avoided the water fights, when M on my other side was going out of his way to get soaked 🙂
After the game, M cheerfully acquired me a game ball – by simply going up and asking. I have no idea how people do that. And then also cheerfully nudged me at a couple of players to get it signed. Which makes a total of 5 people for whom I have ‘asked’ for signatures*. Thanks M, I definitely could not have done it without you!
And then I had several goes on the slippery slide in my perfectly appropriate dress and jeans combination. I had a fine day out and the Aces won 3-2, which was lovely to see, given that they’ve had a pretty rough season, poor darlings. (Boxscore | Recap)
Threats of never being permitted to leave were duly issued and I wandered around the field chatting with people and being encouraged to actually play myself. I think J is in charge of being the twitter baseball rookie for this year, it can be my turn next year. If I am still in Australia.
Special thanks to the lovely L, who stayed excited for a visit to the Aces for months after I brought up ABL roadtrip as a possibility and who also made us a fantastic lunch, to S who arranged for tickets and to M and J, who I was so excited about meeting. We had a great day out in perfect weather. Thank you Melbourne for being your reliably Melbourne-y self – I’ve never had a bad visit yet.
* A short history of K asking for signatures:**
- Peter Brock (at age 11 and so crazy super-excited that I must have been completely obnoxious. I have a vague memory of making V8 noises at him, dear god.)
- Bob Geldof (at age 15 – a friend and I ditched school for that one and she did all the talking while I grunted at my feet occasionally and said ‘…thank you…’ as he finished signing her poster)
- Charles de Lint (at age 30 and for whom I managed to squeak out “thank you so much for your books, Newford hasmeantalottome”. He was very kind to me especially when it became clear that my brain had stopped and I was listening to the white-noise inside my head. And that my knees were also not working and my friend F was now in charge of me and my pile of newly signed but clearly well-loved paperbacks until such time as I rebooted.)
- Justin Huber (at age 38, pushed in his direction by M and vaguely waved a pen and a ball at him and said “…please…?…….thank you” while M laughed at me from the side
- Brad Harman (at age 38, pretty much the same story)
** I met John Doobie of the Doobie brothers once and there was a lot of vodka and redbull involved. He signed about a 15 things for us, but I didn’t believe he was who he said he was until he toured Australia 10 years later and I walked into a post while staring at a gig poster.