Monday, June 22, 2015

The humiliation of the long distance skipper

Tonight for the first time ever our weekly evening circuit training session moves outdoors. To Underhill Park to be precise. Scene of one of the most humiliating moments of my childhood.

It's a lovely park, closest to where I lived as a child, and scene of numerous school sports days. 

I'd somehow managed to not be in a race: I was always last to be chosen when teams for any sport were assembled. Now, if I'd known then what I know now I'd have kept quiet but Little Miss Honest had to open her big mouth and tell teacher. This was my first mistake.
'Oh dear, well, let me see, where can we put you? We can't have you not taking part, can we?'
'Can't we?'
'Goodness me no. Here you are, dear. You can be in the skipping race.'

The day of the race dawned bright and sunny; I was doomed. I lined up with my rope and glanced along the line of enthusiastic skippers. 
'Ready, steady, go!'
And we were off.

After it felt like I'd been skipping for hours I looked over my shoulder to see if anyone was behind me. This was my second mistake.

I tripped over my own feet and fell down. I'd have given up at that point but an encouraging teacher on the sidelines called to me, 'Get up! Keep on going!'

By the time I'd got up and untangled my rope everyone had crossed the finishing line. I glanced across to the teacher who'd cheered me on. 'Go on!' she insisted.

So red-faced - and not from exertion - I finally crossed the line, on my own and well after everyone else.

My gran who'd been watching said to me afterwards, 'If you hadn't looked back you'd have been all right.'
Yes, I suppose instead of coming last five minutes after everyone else I'd just have come last.

I am not looking forward to circuits tonight


SmitoniusAndSonata said...

I had lunch a couple of weeks ago with a dear friend who I'd been to school with . We both giggled hysterically at our memories of school hockey , tennis , netball , P.E , rounders and country dancing ( for when the snow lay too thick for anything outdoors ) ....
We survived ... mostly by keeping our heads down and being ignored by the bright-eyed sporty ones . And , though I say it myself who shouldn't , we both still look reasonably fit !

Liz Hinds said...

And navy knickers! Hockey terrified me. Scary game.