Being an Atlas Corps fellow, and particularly with a welcoming host organization such as CDC Development Solutions (CDS) in DC, comes with a variety of opportunities. There are opportunities to learn new areas of development. One could also utilize their potentials in different ways. A Fellow may also be exposed to more diversity in culture. And, this leads me to sharing my exciting baseball game experience at the Nationals Park DC on Friday August 9, 2013.
I am not so much into sports. But I have always enjoyed soccer, especially when the Black Stars of Ghana are playing. I had heard of baseball game. I had seen a bit of it on TV. Yet, baseball was never on my mind. Prior to going to the Nationals Park, baseball appeared to be a boring game… :-). When CDS offered to purchase “Washington Nationals – Philadelphia Phillies” tickets for interested staff members, I decided to go for it. I had learnt that the game has numerous rules. I did not know if I would enjoy it. I was curious about knowing why Americans loved baseball, also referred to as the Presidents’ Game in a publication by William B. Mead and Paul Dickson.
On the way to the park, my colleagues began explaining how it is played. I heard series, pitcher, batter, strike, run, ball, home plate, rotation… I tried to understand. Interestingly, before the game started I had already gotten excited. I loved the masquerades representing past US Presidents, Teddy, Bill etc. There was smell of good food in the air. Drinks were in abundance. Music was on. The atmosphere at the park was in ecstasy lifting up my spirit. I did not only feel like singing and cheering, I also felt like dancing. Pitchers were warming up. Then the game started and every good performance (strikes, runs etc.)by players triggered enthusiastic screams from fans amidst great music. I made good use of my foamy mitten (with the first finger pointing out). A break during the game meant question and answer time, singing by spectators, presidential race, throwing free balls to spectators. It was more than fun.
After the game, I understood why baseball is so much loved by Americans. I thought to myself, “It’s probably not the just the game itself, but rather the support for a team, the players, the fans, the company, and most importantly the ambiance! Ha! I got it!
And now, asked if I now loved baseball more than soccer, my answer was “…Um…”. Some may not agree with me but I think soccer is great too. Indeed, I cannot wait to see the next African Cup of Nations next year 2014….