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Thursday Cannon Fodder: pick up

Day 1 Festival - UEFA Champions League Final 2021/22 Photo by Boris Streubel - UEFA/UEFA via Getty Images

When I was applying to college, I read that you shouldn’t write the “I traveled to Europe, had a conversation with a stranger on a park bench in [insert city], and it changed my worldview” essay. I have no idea whether that advice is still true or whether a bunch of people are still writing that essay anyway.

But this is our blog and my CF. So I’m going to write about how awesome playing pickup soccer in a random square in Nafplion, Greece for almost two hours was. It was super fun. Passersby joined, played for a bit, then left. People sat and watched. And afterwards, we got ice cream from the shop in the corner of the square. It was a simple, joyful, human experience. It didn’t change my life, but here I am more than a decade later writing about that evening and smiling.

Have you played pickup soccer on your travels? Where? With who? One of the things my family does when we travel together is point out soccer pitches. Someone can be mid-sentence, and if we’re passing a pitch in the car, it’s perfectly acceptable to cut across them lest everyone else miss the sighting.