Saturday, 4 September 2010

A Game Of Bowls

Ahem, we went bowling yesterday ... and that's the very last time I refer to all those old dears in off white 'uniforms' as a 'bunch of decrepit geriatrics' - oh, I ache! I have muscles in my legs I wasn't aware of. There were old codgers beetling up and down after their balls - 'bowls', I was oft corrected, to which I was to reply 'but they're just deformed balls!'

My team won, totally without my help. We were being taught to play by our caravan neighbours who play most days throughout the season at Skegness. I was partnered by John and the grumpy old man by Betty, this meant that I could chat to her at one end and grumpy could bore him at the other.

I often got to place the mat as my partner was good and we kept winning, this also meant I got to chuck my ball first at the distant white speck aka 'the jack' - see I'm learning. I was also to learn things like 'bias' and 'jack high' [yeah, I thought that was cards too].

Like any poor loser/worker I blamed my tools, or in this case - bowls [woods, oh yes!]. They were too light being size 0's, I really wanted to try 2's but they were already out, grumpy had 3's, and bugger me - he was good at it, I mean really good - was I jealous? Not a bit, he's got to be better than me at something. So ... no, I'm not in the least bit bothered, not jealous at all, I don't know why I mentioned it really - it was just that I needed to fill up this paragraph that I'd already started [t**t!].

Of course [yes, I'm still in excuse mode], I would probably have played better with a screen around a good portion of me to blot out the view of my derrière when I played my bowls. Now why I should think anyone is interested in the size of my gluteus maximus is a mystery, because Skeggy is the big bum capital of the east coast in summer and mine seriously isn't that big [no it isn't].

It didn't help that the opposition standing next to me and giving me excellent advice - 'aim for the darker green patch' or ' the vibrant green bit' [depending on which end we were playing from] - is very slim and petite. She approached the mat with graceful, fluid movements and sent all her bowls in a perfect arc toward the jack. Whereas I lumbered up like a Russian shot putter, madly dusting my bowl as I went - giving me time to have a sneaky look around to make sure there were few, if any witnesses to the eclipse that was shortly to occur.

Unfortunately, being more aware of my bum instead of concentrating on the job in hand meant that instead of taking my time, I just lobbed the bowl to get rid of it as fast as I could, often sending it straight down toward the jack instead of curving it. This resulted in them frequently dribbling out of play and occasionally to nestle comfortably amongst the bowls of the neighbouring players - yeah, yeah, OK. I've done with the feeble excuses now.

I was to finish our game with a stagger and handshakes all round [and a hug from the grumpy old man]. Oh heck! It was m-i-l-e-s back to the car. When we'd finally got there [a few minutes later] and I'd draped myself somewhat melodramatically over the passenger seat, I realised my left leg was still hanging about outside [yes, it is attached before you ask]. I begged it to lift itself up and in - it completely ignored me so I gripped the hem of my shorts and dragged it in. The GOM - usually big on sympathy - said I'd be fine after I'd had a couple of paracetamols - PARACETAMOLS!!  - I wanted walking sticks or preferably a Zimmer frame.

Betty and John arrived back at their caravan shortly after us. They asked today if we'd gone straight out as they didn't see us again. Well, no they wouldn't, I'd rushed into the caravan - after having more severe words with my legs about how long they were taking to mount the steps - had a hot shower [no bath to soak in here] and then tottered down the caravan going 'oooooh, owwww' to plonk down in front of the telly to do a bit of crocheting - making the cat a bright orange and fluffy pink blanket as punishment for turning me into a zombie while she was missing.

And this pathetic wreck of womanhood was achieved with just over an hours play. What made it worse was the knowledge that our fit neighbours have regularly played for several hours, come back at teatime to immediately start a bit of intensive - on your knees - weeding and lawn edge trimming, whilst I was to be found watching them lazily over the top of my book from a sun lounger ... yawn.

'Will we be playing bowls again?' I hear you ask, you bet we will - just as soon as I've recovered - in about a month's time. Oh yes, and when I've got me a big portable screen to hide my a**e ...

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Be nice, I'm very sensitive.