Saturday, August 18, 2007

Botswana vs. Tanzania rugby match

When we got back, we were super tired. But we didn’t really have time to rest – we went almost immediately with the rest of the group to a rugby game! I’d never been to a rugby game before, and it was pretty big. It was Botswana vs. Tanzania, and they were playing in one of the two grass stadiums in Botswana (both are in Gaborone). Botswana trounced Tanzania – it was so much fun! They played some awesome music and the crowd was great. There were these teenage girls sitting a few rows in back of us that were so funny… they kept doing these great cheers and were so into the game! It was hard to not get involved, and I was totally rooting for Botswana. When they played the techno-ish music, all of us were dancing in the stands with the crowd. I definitely missed Pete during some of the dancing. They kept on playing this really really good song called “Stand up.” Apparently, it’s by Right Said Fred! Who even knew he was still around? I need to download it. And it’s funny – in the states, the bar closes before the stadium closes, I guess so people don’t drive home drunk. Here, the bar stays open way after the game ends. Most people aren’t driving anyways, I guess, but the definitely make more money that way.

It was cool seeing a rugby game and learning about it too. There are these funny things called scrums… where the two teams basically have a shoving match against each other as a team. It’s sort of like a jump ball in basketball. Whoever gets to the ball in the middle first throws it to someone on their team on the outside. And the scoring is a little tricky, but it’s basically like football in that you have to run it into an endzone. The only passing that is allowed is lateral or behind you, otherwise it’s an off sides call. And when you run into the endzone, it doesn’t count as a score until you touch the ball to the ground. And where you touch the ball to the ground is the point at which you line up at to kick the extra point, so many players try to get to the middle as much as they can before touching the ground. I’m sure I’m butchering the rules, but it was pretty fun to learn.

We also met quite a few people there – they seem to enjoy meeting foreigners, and I think some of them don’t know quite what to make of me, a Chinese woman. Two guys we met were Tanzania fans, and they were so funny. Every time Botswana scored, they ordered another beer, and were like, maybe this will make it better. And after the next score, nope not any better! They're the two guys in striped shirts in the picture. It turned out that one of the guys owns Primi’s (the place we went to dinner two nights ago). Their names were Ronald and something I couldn’t quite make out – it sounded like Adam. They invited us out for drinks at Primi’s, so a few of us went there for dinner after the rugby game. Even Steve Gluckman and Barry Nathans went! It was a ton of fun, and they ordered us so many different shots, especially me at first. But I was getting sick and by the end, I had stopped drinking and was ready to go. It was nice to meet some other people though… they invited us out for other things later, like fishing or going out to other clubs! I don’t think we’ll keep in touch with them that much, but it’s nice to know we have other options. Here are a few more pictures of us and the people we met:

Ronald took this nice picture of Kiona, Kristy and I.

This is Kiona, Thabo, Josh and Lisa.

From top left: Dr. Steve Gluckman (who started the whole Penn in Botswana program), Dr. Barry Nathans (pediatrician), Kristy (med student), Kiona (med student), Lisa (resident), Mike (resident), and Josh (recent Penn grad)


bathmate said...

nice posting....i like is really helpfull to all...


JoJoJangJang said...

Thanks! I think rugby is getting more exposure in the States now, with the movie Invictus.