Water polo trip was worth the work
The fancy charter bus cost $1,600 dollars. We raised the money from a yard sale, various car washes and super hard work from parents, coach Andrew Del Carlo, high school boys and girls under the hot August sun. Many, many sweaty days, lots of hard work.
From my vantage, the wintry bus ride to Bend was smooth, comforting. I slept the whole way, 27 boys and gi¬rls sang — someone threw in a DVD of "Elf" on the bus overheads. Fifteen parents sat up front with a mood of eagerness and good cheer — the same mood of the many TV screens the Elf film seemed to promote in its theme. I only heard it from my slumber of my left ear against icy cold safety glass and the passing of fir tree forests, Rogue River headwaters, Crater Lake above us.
First game, Ashland vs. Summit, in Bend's double deep ended polo pool under a giant canvas tent steaming a mysterious mist over the packed stadium. Game time 1 o'clock! I stood behind a cheering section of Grizzly boys who lost their voices cheering, "Ashland, Ashland, Ashland!" The score came out 16-15 Summit. The Grizz girls left every bit of energy and emotion in that Bend pool. I choke up thinking about the girls' good intentions and near win, tying it, tying again, almost a win, and yet graciously shaking hands with their competitors. Summit on to semis, Ashland girls done for the season. My daughter's last game as a senior.
My metaphor of sports in Ashland is very much like Will Ferrel's character in "Elf"; show up, play hard, and have good cheer. For us 47 parents and kids who went on that chartered bus ride, it's more than water polo, more than a sport. It's about pride, hard work, community, sometimes winning and sometimes losing well.
On a very bright note, the Ashland boys beat Park Rose 11-10 to advance to semifinals at state to defend their state title.
Let teenagers trick or treat if they wish
My daughter and I enjoyed the trick or treaters at our door on Halloween. We especially enjoyed the older kids. These were wholesome kids not intent on mischief.
However, a friend related to us that some people rejected them, saying they were too old to be trick or treating. Don't we often regret that our kids grow up too soon?
I recall as a child going up and down my street without concern for predators and returning home with a grocery bag full of goodies. Is it possible that we as oldsters have become too rigid in our attitudes about kids having innocent fun?
I recall my dad relating about tipping over outhouses at Halloween. Isn't teenagers trick or treating far more acceptable? I am 78, and feel that we should not criticize the youngsters for their innocent fun. It is a far cry from their elders "fun". Shame on you!
Beverly De Waard