Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Coop Football Championship & Disco

September 19th, 2009

The next day was yet another eventful day in San Juan Bautista.

Around 6:00 PM, I went to Analia’s house to meet up with Anne, Claire, and John (fellow Volunteers) and Analia and Yaz (Paraguayan friends).

We played “Bullshit” (couldn’t be avoided...that’s just the name of the game) while listening to Analia’s iPod for a few hours.

Around 9:00 PM, I met up with Peke and went to the 24 (the name of a local soccer team) indoor soccer stadium where employees from my cooperative played in the inter-organizational tournament final against the jail staff. The team from the Jail were, probably logically so, huge, aggressive, and fiercely competitive but the Cooperative was fast, smart, and patient. You wouldn’t think so, but this game was a big deal. The Jail fan following was humongous. They set off really loud fireworks, had their own Mariachi band, and took pictures in front of the goal as if they had made it to the World Cup final.

The Jail went up 2 nothing quick-like in the first half, which really depressed and flustered the Cooperative team and fans. There was almost a fight, in which this huge dude would have surely pummeled the old, skinny, professional Loan Department manager from the cooperative. I have no idea what they were fighting about, but judging by the intensity, you would have thought it was a high-stakes, big money on the line, National Championship instead of a local town inter-organizational tournament final.

I’ve come to realize that, while Paraguayans are generally very nice and tranquil, when it comes to competition, they are very prone to cheating, fighting, and fiercely arguing.

Side Note: I had to move halfway across the stadium because this drunk wouldn’t stop pestering me in Guaraní. He was being very aggressive, was very drunk, and really annoying...not to mention the fact that I couldn’t understand a word coming out of his mouth because he was speaking in slurred Guaraní.

Anyway, the Cooperative came back strong in the second half, quickly tying the game up. We went crazy with each goal scored. Near the end of the game, the Cooperative scored again, making the score 3-2 in the Cooperative’s favor, and before too much longer the whistle blew making the Cooperative the official Champions of the local inter-organizational tournament! My colleagues from the Coop and I went Ballistic! We jumped up, screamed, jumped around, slapped high fives and rushed the field. Everyone met in the middle, jumping up and down, chanting, “hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey.” Then we took a lap around the stadium, and finally met in the middle again to receive the trophy. It was a glorious moment, and I was very proud to be part of the winning team.

Funny Story: We’re all crowded around the trophy after the excitement had died down and this drunk guy came up with a beer and poured it inside the trophy (it’s the big cup style trophy instead of the figure style). Some of the coop team members tried to stop him right before he did it but were unsuccessful. Party Foul! The bear immediately spilled all over the gym floor (because it wasn’t sealed at the bottom) and ruined the lettering on the base. What an idiot! Haha.

Afterwards, I went back to Analia’s house where we wasted time before going to the club. We passed the time by playing MASH. Remember contemplating your future by playing MASH as a kid? So according to MASH, I’m going to marry Analia, live in North Dakota in a shack, earn a million dollars a year working in the local circus, and drive an Aston Martin...not too shabby.

After all that stimulating conversation (sense the sarcasm), we needed to rest our minds by dancing our hearts out so we headed to the local club. We danced the night away, and then I called it night, walking the 100 yards or so to my house. Yeah I live super close to the club so every Saturday night I hear the constant beat well into the early morning.

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