I attended my first Rugby match yesterday, and let me tell you, it was the amazing.
A few friends and I hopped on a train to go to Edinburgh. Scotland versus Japan seemed like a good game to attend, and a good game it was.
Let me go ahead and admit to those of you who don’t know this about me: I don’t care for football (American football). Yeah, I know, that’s sort of a blasphemous thing to say since I’m from a southern state…it’s the truth though. I can count the total number of SMU games I’ve attended on just one hand. I apologize, SMU. It’s not that I don’t have school spirit, it’s simply the sport of football that I can’t force myself to sit through and watch. I won’t waste the time of explaining why, but I will explain why rugby is so much better than football.
As soon as we got off the train in Edinburgh, there was no need for directions nor a worry of getting lost because the city was on the march toward the stadium. There were throngs of people in blue trekking in one direction, so we followed.
This was a whole new kind of tailgate. People painted their faces, carried the Scottish flag on their backs and chanted Scottish tunes that I still have yet to learn. In fact, I could hear the chanting before we had come near the outskirts of the stadium. There were people of all ages and equal spirit ready for rugby.
Once inside, food and drink tents were pitched everywhere. Guinness and Grouse were perhaps the two tents that made me laugh most as I thought, “only in Scotland.” Some men had dawned their kilts for the match as well, and again I thought, “only in Scotland.”
Once in our seats, we watched as the match began. In my opinion, 80 minutes is a perfectly suitable amount of time for a sporting event of any sort. The match didn’t drag, and it was paced well enough to hold interest. It was really a great time as well. Each time Scotland scored, “I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)” by The Proclaimers blasted through the spears, and the entire crowd clapped and sang along.
Scottish pride permeated the atmosphere completely. Scottish pride, not simply in the sense of the Scottish national team, but as a whole. I think that is perhaps what I found most captivating at the match, and what I continue to find so admirable each and every day I spend here.
Moral of the story: go see a rugby match if you ever get the chance. I promise you, it is completely worth it.