Cricket…the bonds that bind

One of the self imposed rules for my blogsite is anonymity for myself and everyone else I may meet.

The intention today was to join some ‘old’ friends for a day at the cricket at the Oval but for the second year running in organising such an event, not a ball was bowled nor a player seen in the middle. (Sussex did start warming up) yet a most enjoyable day was had by all!

The same happened at Lords last May for Middlesex v Somerset so the chances of lightning striking twice seemed remote! But the lightning and thunder at the Oval were something to behold!

Not a ball was bowled on the latest day of this odyssey but something more than a step on the odyssey was achieved.

Friendships were reaffirmed (as if they needed to be) and cricket was almost an afterthought- in reality it was, as there was no play! Cricket possibly like most other sports has the ability to reaffirm friendships but I pose the question…in what other game could or would a group of friends gather to watch rain fall and no sport take place other than a cricket match in the vain yet hopeless hope that the weather would improve and the rain relent? Just as it has done as I write this blog on an over crowded commuter train on the way home as the sun bursts through and no indication that a drop of rain has fallen!

So there is no cricket to report…no sumptuous cover drives, no unplayable quick stuff, no quick singles to defy logic nor any indecipherable spin bowling…yet I have a warm inner glow of friends gathering for a catch up on children, grandchildren and reminiscing over acquaintances from times past, plus an update on gardens and allotments which felt at times that I had wandered into an episode of Gardeners World but all helped by copious amounts of food and drink whilst the rain fell, the lighting crackled and the thunder boomed overhead almost simultaneously!

Perhaps it is the wine speaking, but in what other sporting context would picnics be prepared, cheeses chosen with such care and cakes baked to provide sustenance to the inner man or woman through the long never ending showers or passages of play? Where else would such care and attention be paid?

So while there was no cricket to watch, a most enjoyable day was held and the bond of friendships reaffirmed (if they ever needed to be so in the first place) and a blog written when there was nothing sporting or related to write about.

Dare I say that there is something more important than cricket? Friendships are nurtured, tended and grown over years and decades and to have such friendships is an honour and a luxury that not everyone has and to have two consecutive occasions of ‘let’s go and watch some cricket’ when there has been no play at all can stretch some to the limits but I know I blessed with such good friends!

Tomorrow is the last day of this short odyssey of cricket (and rugby) watching with Essex v Glamorgan at Chelmsford but have no fear…there’s more but less intense next week!

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