A little back history to me for those that haven't been aware. I lost my fiance to cancer in November. That too is a daily battle for me. Some days are easier than others. When I took my spring training trip, it was my first time going out and doing anything since I lost her. I did most of the trip alone, but I never was alone. I felt her spirit with me, as she too was a huge baseball fan. She was a Chicago area native that loved the Cardinals, so forgive me for not hating too much on the Cards. Anyways, I always felt her watching the spring games with me, even as I went to each of of them on my own, not meeting any friends or going with any friends in particular. I am a shy person by nature, but still try to say hi to strangers and I will gladly talk baseball with anyone that will listen, so going alone was no big deal for me. The trip was a blast. But even though I spent the nights at friends houses, and got to spend a little time with them here and there, the trip was still a solo adventure.
Fast forward to this weekend. I have been following a number of people on twitter, and conversing with many of you on different blogs, usually Gaslampball. 2 of the people I converse regularly with invited me to watch the game with them when I announced my intentions to come Friday. After finally securing tickets for three (and that is an adventure on secondary ticket markets) in an area suitable for a certain ticket snob, my excitement level was among the highest it has been in the last six months.
Friday morning after work, I hit the road, daring military convoys and windmills to stop me. I am a "wruter" afterall and if those windmills got in my way, well I would fight them. Bonus points to anyone who gets that reference.
|Creepin on a Ghost, |
and a "Girlie"
from San Diego
Upon arriving to San Diego, I checked into twitter and discovered that a couple other bloggers were eating at Lolita's across from Petco Park. They were creeping on the FSSD Girls, so I had no problem creeping on them, and since I was standing 20 yards from the restaurant, I decided to do just that. And when I entered, sure enough I saw the brains behind 3 of the blogs I follow (smart ones out there, figure it out!!)
I joined them while I had my tacos, and waited for the rest of my party to arrive. When they did, I parted ways and made my way towards the entrance, and met with Colleen of "Green Grass Love Affair" and Kaity of "Unfinished Business"
We then headed to the Party at the Park, where I was sorely disappointed when they didn't have margarita mix when I went to the front of the line. Not cool, Party Organizers. Not Cool. While in the Park though, I once again saw the Ghost and the Girlie, and introduced them to Colleen and Kaity. While we all chatted, other twitter Padres fans started gathering, including Wonko from GLB, BCline, Charisma. It was so weird seeing people for the first time, yet already feeling like I knew them. I guess because, basically, I do know them. While chatting with Wonko (Sean) he noticed something down the hill...
Yep, it is the Sisterhood of the Traveling Jersey!!! So I made my way down to see it. As I approached, I was recognized immediately as Nater Tater before I could say a word. It's an interesting feeling being recognized by a stranger. I chatted with them briefly and got a couple of pictures and admired the new patches sewn on so beautifully by the Chief's Ma.
The game was ready to begin, and I discovered that Kaity is just as superstitious as I am...actually more superstitious than I am..about being in the seat before the game starts. We hustled our way to sit in our "highroller" section behind home plate in what was clearly the best seat I've ever had at Petco
The Game itself started off poorly. The Marlins scored 5 quick runs in the first inning, and I thought, "Well at least I have good company." The Padres started making a little noise in the third inning, and in the middle of the rally, these two ladies showed up
The Fox Sports San Diego Girls arrived and chatted with us, since they had heard (because I may have tweeted them and said so) I had made the drive from Yuma for this game. They were clearly good luck because the Padres scored 6 runs, including Bass' bases clearing "triple" to take a short lived lead. The FSSD Girls took a picture with the group of us and went on their way
|Me with a Pad Squad member,|
who like me, has Arizona roots.
She however, was not the one
who gave me the ball,
nor the one who wore the SOTJ
during the Spring Training.
During the 7th inning stretch, the Pad Squad was standing near my section, and because I am an animated person and part time umpire, I was giving the out signal on the "you're out" part of "Take Me Out to the Ball Game" It impressed Pad Squad enough to give me a ball! Thanks Pad Squad
|Kaity, with a souvenier|
Shortly after that, I tweeted that this game was one of the best I've ever attended, and it was. The game itself was pretty fun, despite the eventual loss (and the loss of my voice) but because of all the people I had met. At that point, Dex and/or JBox from Gaslampball asked me where I was, and started creeping on me. As I looked over a strange looking fella with a ski mask (I might be lying about that part) looked towards me and pointed. Under most circumstances, I would find this odd, and I still found it between 6.19 and 31.3551% odd. But in 4.2 seconds, a code was flashed to me (bonus to those who can figure it out) like a secret handshake, and I saw Dex, so I knew it was the guys. I wanted a picture, but apparently the seat nazis at Petco don't like you standing in an aisles. It also appears I am quite hugable.
Like I said, the game itself was very fun and exciting, despite the loss that would probably have left me frustrated if I was sitting at home seeing the blown opportunities and 16 runners left on base. The comeback on Heath Bell in the 9th was awesome. It is too bad the Padres lost and have gone on to lose the next two as well, but it felt damn good watching baseball with so many that I do consider friends. I was really sad to leave, because I love 2 things almost more than anything on earth: Baseball, and San Diego. Thus it makes great sense that I love San Diego Baseball. I did not want to leave the cooler weather, the ballpark atmosphere, and most of all I did not want to leave people of a kindred spirit. There is a bond with Padres fan that is unique. So I think that explains part of the funk I've been in. I'm missing friends and companionship. I'm feeling alone. Retelling these experiences helped me recapture that joy. So in that regards, writing, on a night I felt no motivation to do so, was very good thing to do.
Until next time, KTF.