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Thursday, 17 February 2011

Losing your wife and gaining a stunner!!!

Mummy, this ship is sinking!!!!
Living down here in Kent, near the Medway, we all get used to being near water and rivers. There is always a possibility that one day, poler ice caps may melt and we will all be flooded. Realistically never in our or our grand kids lifetime will this happen, but with our impending move to St Mary's Island, it comes back into my mind.

Much as I love our wee abode near Priestfields, my wife reminds me that whilst we can not sell our property in Orpington and we are still faced with renting, a move might be wise to ease the cost of rental.

So off we go again, the pleasures of having post redirected and notifying all and sundry of our move will take place. I hasten to add at this point, my beloved takes care of all of this in a heartbeat and I am left to get on with work. BFGW has nothing on us.

Today marks the second year of our marriage. Along with my birthday last year, any proper celebration has been scuppered thanks to our wonderful wee daughter and the germs she inherits from nursery. Chicken pox we reckon this time.

So tonight, with my gorgeous wife tucked up in bed with Whisky, Honey and Lemon (the actual products and not some Lesbian fantasy formed in the minds of you more perverse reading this) I am left to muse the passing of two eventful years with Alice.

All I can think about is what we have lost together. 8 stone to be precise! A whole person!

I would have been happy if nothing had changed. Anyone who has had the pleasure of meeting Alice will know what a lucky chap I truly am.

But change has happened for the both of us and two years on, we are different looking people.

Can we go and have lunch and show my new hairdo off now, please!!!!!

I can not believe I am married to the same lassie that I wed on our lovely day two years ago in Gretna, all her hard work to get in shape has really paid off. Honestly, I have vetted all our milkmen and window cleaners just to be sure!!!

Because of circumstance, many close friends and family were not around on the day itself. But everyone who felt they missed out, was in our hearts that day. The champagne secretly sent was certainly in our belly's!

I am a lucky chap, I truly am blessed with three amazing children and a stunning wife.

 And her looks, they are just a bonus.

Monday, 14 February 2011

Sunday Morning Footie (VI) - White Lines, (don't don't do it.)

Robbie Fowler - eat your heart out!!!
Thankfully, I have had a day on the road to Macclesfield and back to ponder this post. Oh so much to say in the heat of the moment, but I have had eight hours on the road including one lucrative meeting to contemplate my Musing's tonight.

Let us get the harsh stat out of the way. We lost 4-1, out of the Cup and a few bruised hearts. But that is only the start of the Sunday morning shenanigan's.

To get a game on at the Howard School our coaches have long emphasised the importance of parents turning up early to assist in getting, to what is to all intents and purposes a public pitch, the playing field clear of all debris and fit to play. On Sunday the majority of the parents let our boys down. It was a cold morning and I, along with a lot of other Mums and Dads, sat in the car to keep warm.

At 10.25, I started to wrap up against the elements only to see our boys coming toward the cars. Surely the game could not be called off. No, their Manager had complained that pitch markings were so poor that the game could  not take place unless the white lines were brought up to scratch.

What followed was a pure comedy and not a funny one at that. Our Gaffer was seen on his mobile, organising a line marker for him to pick up, when he really should have been free to motivate and get our boys prepared. Had I got off my warm and comfortable backside, I could have been doing that for him. But no, I had gotten lazy and fallen into the habit of just turning up and watching our boys reap the rewards of his and the team's efforts. Just stand on the touchline and relax in the glory of their performance, not this time. Lesson learned.

When any team loses, it is human nature to look for any cheap excuse to blame for the loss. But this one is geniune. Despite the difference in leagues, there was nothing out there this morning to separate the two teams. Except perhaps the loss of our coach for half an hour before kick off. Preparation is crucial to any team, no matter what level. This morning, thanks to the devious opposition manager, ours was done for.

So kick off we did, almost an hour late. A scrappy goal, saw them one nil up. Ironically our Keeper tried in vain to keep it off the line. Yes, that freshly marked line!

But once again, Rainham showed what experts they were becoming at set pieces and another great and brave header from one of the less tall lads on the field, saw us draw level. Great finish.

The second half saw very little between the two teams. Just a couple of more clinical finishes, thanks to puberty coming early to a few of their players, saw us fall to 4-1 down. But the lads still did not fold. They competed well and saw off the opposition's greater physical prowess. On another day, it could have been so different. This is where the little things do matter.

Harvey put in a steady and forceful performance at the heart of defence. His presence at set pieces definitely contributed to the goal. As his confidence grows, along with his overall mobility, teams like Cliffe will become easier to control. He was rewarded with yet another MOTM performance, but took no pleasure in overseeing defeat.

Keeping warm, when he should have been kicking Cliffe butts.....!
The omens were against Rainham 84 today. The good thing was, none of the boys complained, they just got on with it. Harvey came off the pitch at the end, with that horrible look in his eye that he has when he loses and said 'no one seemed to care today'. I disagree. I think all the boys cared, as usual. Perhaps we need to look further about who really cared this morning. I for one will hold my hand up and say, I could have done more. Harvey sensed a lack of care. But it was not from the boys. Parents like me need to look long and hard at themselves and say, 'what else could I have done to make my lad have a better day'. I know what I should have done and I know I will endeavour to assist where I can from now on.

But we also must keep things in perspective. Football is a very special game in the hearts of the Mackay's and a lot of other families out there too. When the enjoyment of competition gets squeezed out of it by over zealous and pedantic individuals, it is hard to take any pleasure from it. I would have typed that even if we had won today.

However whilst on the point of rules, one bit of humour did come from the tense atmosphere created by Cliffe. When you are handed the flag to run the line, you must try your best to remain impartial. No coaching whilst running the line. Their linesman had previous. He did it last season and again today. One might say cheating! It did not go unnoticed and a bit of crowd trouble ensued. Don't you just love football!!!

Next week we are faced with the tough task of playing the top of our league. We must put today behind us, focus on the good things we do and get back to winning ways. We will, with a little help from all those involved.

And a little word to our ref, in the wise words of Grandmaster Flash in the future, 'it's as hard as hell to fight it, don't buy it'!

Monday, 7 February 2011

Sunday Morning Footie (V) - Playing away from home....

Windy day in Kent, was always going to cause problems.
Correct kit, check, boots, check, drink bottle, check, breakfast, check, water proof jacket, check, directions, check, so head in the right place to win today, check. Man of the Match Trophy, erm Dad have you got it.... eh no. 25 mile round trip to get it before kick off, check.

So your dedicated reporter missed what went on in the warm up, but what ever it was it carried itself onto the pitch. The game started off ok, Rainham 84 had all the skills and ability. Bottom of the table opponents, surely this was a walk in the park? However Cobham forgot to read the script. With their first meaningful attack, they carved 84 open and the boys were 1-0 down.

No panic, despite our lack of effort, the better passing and directness of Rainham saw them up 2-1 and cruising into the second half.

Then our boy Harvey decided to write himself into this weekend's musings. A long punt from Cobham looked for all the world to be going no where. Harvey decided to shepherd it out, only to be undone by the hard graft of Cobham. 2-2 and into half time. No words were exchanged between Father and Son at half time, he knew it was a mess, I needed to say nothing.

Stalemate followed and it looked for all the possession that Rainham had, they were going to let three points just slip away. Oh no. Harvey had other ideas. Hurting from his error in the first half, he still did not let his head drop. He pulled his socks up, got on with the job in hand, and trundled up for a corner.

An excellent delivery from the corner was met bravely by the Captain and was placed far enough away from the Keeper to make it 3-2. The relief from the crowd was measurable and the smile on Harvey's face was wide. There is nothing quite like seeing your boy score a goal, especially with his head. Nice one son!

The belief and effort then seemed to flood back into the boys. Cobham were done for and the last 15 minutes were all Rainham. 4-2 and then 5-2 followed.

On paper, a great away win for the lads. But we all knew differently at the end. We got out of jail. They say, if you play badly and still win, you are doing something right. We did that today, because as a unit, playing together and working together, Rainham are a match for any team in Kent. But when they let their high standards drop, it can all fall apart. As the Gaffer said at the end, it could have gone either way at 2-2.

I know some might say, it is 'only' Sunday morning footie. But when these lads get it right, it is better than anything I pay those scam merchants at Sky to watch each month. It means something to see them smile and also to see them win. When the effort dips and it looks like a result is heading the wrong way, it actually hurts. Because of the effort and work put in on those freezing cold and windy nights at training, the result came our way today, even if they were playing on auto pilot.

Next time Rainham 84 play away from home, they have to be more switched on for sure, or they will get caught out. Onwards and upwards!

The Gaffer rallying the boys.

Sunday, 6 February 2011

Mote Park Fun

It is windy here in Kent, not a lot to do, but with the Scottish blood in the kids, let's go to the park!!!

Any second now, weeeeeeeee!
Louise was feeling under the weather, but she just wanted to slide one more time!!!!

Honest Dad, there is no string attached!

Harvey kept himself warm, by trying to prove that Centre Backs do have some skill. His ball skills would make even Colin Hendry blush.

Who is that skinny woman scaring me! lol!

Mathilda still loves climbing high and jumping around, she has no fear! But Louise was not feeling too good today, so it all got cut short. Harvey wanted to focus on tomorrow's game so Mathilda and Dad had a good chance to have a Daddy and Daughter meal out.

Dad, we can not eat all this!!!
It was lovely being able to take my eldest daughter out for dinner, I am sure any Dads out there with daughters know what I mean. They took ages to serve us for our desert,  but Mathilda just sat, quietly and without complaint. She did enjoy it when it came though! It was just a lovely evening. It is so much fun taking Mathilda out for dinner, she is such good company. Here is to lots more Daddy and Daughter days out.