Moving the AB’s goal posts
I was at the eventful All Blacks game in the Cake Tin on Saturday night. It was a first for me to see the ABs, and in the stadium.
Maggie, my university journalism friend and I were in Wellington to meet Tyler who was in our year group and flying in from Washington DC.
But three legs, three planes with mechanical issues and 45 hours later, Tyler missed the game somewhere over the Tasman. So did those on a Singapore Airlines flight whose plane was cancelled in Sydney when a pilot failed an alcohol test. The planets were not aligned.
It was a spontaneous decision to go to the game, so I called Ticketek Saturday morning.
The woman at the end of the line urged us to purchase our tickets as they were selling fast. Aisle 22, row Z, seats 93 and 94. We were in the “gods”, under cover, out of any weather that could turn.
But the weather was on our side. We have to find gratitude in small things at this time. It was a brutal game, on and off the field. Maggie strained her neck muscles from the urgency of helping the ABs break through the impenetrable Springbok defence. I was on my feet jumping in anticipation of the turnover as the ABs passed the ball in quick succession, and banged my knee on the seat in front. There’s a red mark, but no blood letting. I got off lightly. Seated next to us was 16-year-old Faleseu Tauailoto (pictured ),a Feilding High student, also excited to be at his first ABs game. The excitement was palpable. The crowds’ chant for the ABs rose into the night sky against the twinkling lights of Roseneath in the distance. A collective will to help our team to win. It was so close. The ABs tried, the crowd tried. The goal posts moved, I swear, the ball bounced twice. The post mortems by the disappointed were damning, damned awful. We left the stadium, a quiet bobbing mass, heading home. My first ABs game. But only two points separated the victors. Those damned goal posts.