Saturday, February 03, 2007

Sporting Event of the Year

Monday several of Marvin’s friends called to invite him to a wrestling match between the U.S. and the country we live in and the U.S. and the locals. After one of his friends told him that his friends could get him free tickets and that his wife was going we thought we would accept his invitation and go as well. It turned out to be quite an event. First the minister of sports promised our friend’s friend would get actual tickets, what really happened was that we had to have someone with an event badge come to let us through 2 sets of guards. (Security was everywhere at this event.) Once we made it through the first set of guards we had to go to a different entrance where the important people get in. Now here we found a bunch of people trying to convince the guards to let them in. A lot of local people were trying to speak English to pass them selves off as Americans, it didn’t really work. (Most of these people were men so it was a little awkward being a woman in this crowd.) It was literally like a mosh pit, we were so crammed together, and at one point I was pressed up against a guard’s gun. The three of us women locked arms and I pushed from behind as and we eventually made it through the crowd, but our husbands were still left outside. About 10 minutes later Marvin came into the stadium and said it got a little worse because the president came and they had to clear a path for him. I was very glad that the ladies were not there at that point. The good news was that everyone made it in without having to pay.
The crowd packed the house, every aisle was filled and eventually people who wanted a better view decided to sit up in the rafters.

It was very interesting watching a sporting event where you can understand both languages being spoken. At one point the American who was getting beat gained a couple of points and the announcer said, a present for the American. When the American team finished getting smoked by the national team (who had about 6 Olympic Gold Medalist on the team) the announcer told the crowd there would be a 5 minute break for the Americans took on the locals which turned into a 30 minute show of dancing and singing. This "5 minute break" was followed by 20 minutes of presentations to important people in the box seats (pictured above). It was also funny watching how the Americans were always ready to go immediately after the previous match ended; they did a lot of waiting around for the locals and the national team, being prompt is not valued in this culture. We were very glad we were able to make it to what the papers said was the “Sporting Event of the year.”

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