When James said he wanted to join the cricket team in Sherston I never realised how involved it would be for either of us.
I loved the idea of him being part of a team and taking part in something so gentlemanly and perhaps naively thought a few hours a week wouldn’t be that intrusive.
Five years later and James is captain of the Saturday team and last year captained and initiated a Sherston indoor team on a Sunday during the winter – and yes I still married him.
Every year I feel more surprised that nets start so early – ‘Really?! Already!?’ and then it begins…
The cricket bag is removed from its happy hiding place in the shed and starts its regular appearance in the middle of the kitchen floor. It usually stays here from the weekend until about Wednesday when James can be persuaded to put it away again.
I honestly still have no idea why it needs to be so big, but really don’t want to look inside it!
Then, during the week, start the cricket emails, phone calls, and texts. ‘What you doing?’ I say and comes the regular reply of ‘getting a team together – I’m a player short!’
Last year I even started to suggest players so I must be getting the hang of it now.
During summer, we see a lot more of our Sherston friends and less of our more distant friends but some will visit and watch him play, or even get roped into playing as well.
However the ‘few hours’ I originally expected James to spend playing is more like at least 8 hours on a Saturday and of course as captain he can’t possible not have a pint with the opposition…
It also occurs to me that just playing cricket every Saturday for the whole of summer isn’t enough and in addition to the indoor league and the nets there are meetings.
I’m still not sure if ‘cricket meeting’ is code for ‘beer at the pub’ but apparently its necessary to have frequent get-togethers to discuss everything from the general running of the club to Magna Magic. ‘Again!!!’ is my frequent outburst!
Cricket really does take over sometimes, like when I came off the phone, very excited, massive smile, bit emotional back in October…
Me: ‘Open the wine, Anna’s engaged!’
James: ‘Oh that’s great news, when they thinking of getting married?’
Me: ‘Probably next winter…how exciting!!’
James: ‘Good lass, I won’t have to miss any games then’.
It makes me wonder how this can be his first, most important thought and why missing one game for my best friend’s wedding day would be such a tragedy? He asks this question every time one of our friends gets engaged…
After saying all this, cricket gives us both a great sense of camaraderie.
I have met a lot of my best friends in Sherston by being involved in the cricket and it’s normally an excuse for the ladies to get together on a weekend for a glass (or two) of fizz, which of course we all do begrudgingly.
The ground is beautiful and on a sunny day it’s a pleasure to be there.
So although it’s a massive commitment and very restrictive at times, I’m so pleased James is captain and that we do both get enjoyment from it.
However the season has not yet started and if asked in four months time my views might have changed significantly!