Saturday, December 5, 2009

The Big Match Live

One afternoon I walking past a favourite haunt, the fruitshake stall. I was greeted by a young man who works there (or there-abouts). He told me his football team were playing that afternoon, and that he would like me to come along and cheer him on. I agreed. I was envisaging something along the lines of a 5-a-side knock-about game in a local park.

Soon enough I was Luang Prabang stadium, a full size arena with a huge seating capacity, ready to watch the big match....of the fruit shake guys vs the teachers from the school of administration. In full football strips. It felt utterly bizarre to be there in such a large official looking stadium for what seemed like it ought to be such a casual game. But they took it very seriously, there were official linesmen and a medic, and a board for substitutions etc.

Happily I can report a win for Nong (who invited me) and his team. Final score was 4-2 to the fruit shake guys, and Nong was a proud goal scorer. All of this unfolded in front of an audience of about 20 people, but I was totally happy to be one of them!