Monday, June 16, 2008

Playing Softball In Germany

Yesterday we had our annual church picnic. It was a really great time of fun and fellowship with the usual cookout on the grill and lots and lots of good food. One thing we did here for the first time was to have a softball game. For most Americans that does not sound like a big deal but in Germany most people have never played any kind of baseball. So what we ended up with was quite a few people doing their best to play a game they had only seen in a movie.

We divided up those who wanted to play into two teams. But when the teams consist of a few Americans and people from Germany, Croatia, Russia, and South Africa then as you can imagine the skill level is not too high. Besides that we had adults and kids playing so that also had an effect on how much we bent the rules in order to just have fun and not really count who was winning or losing. Some of the kids ended up having about five strikes before they hit the ball and many of us who were playing the field were suspiciously inept at being able to make an easy throw to first base or something similar. However, everyone had a lot of fun (myself included) and we all found out that just playing for the fun of it is alright sometimes.

One thing that I did get thinking about was the differences between different countries and how something that people are so used to in one place is so strange to people from another place. Softball is one such example of that. I thought it was really great for so many people who had never swung a bat or put on a baseball glove to go out and try this strange game and how most of them did surprising well at it. We may or may not play softball at our church picnic next year but I am sure the memories from this year's game will last a long time.

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