Frankly speaking football (actually known as soccer) has always been, for me, somewhat similar to deep sea algae; that is to say, we don’t really have any impact on each other’s lives and I don’t particularly want to watch it.
Naturally, because I live in France…with a French man, I can’t completely avoid soccer, like I can deep sea algae, still for all intents and purposes, soccer is not a part of my life.
BUT, once every four years, it sort of floods the atmosphere and I am forced to admit its existence. Actually that’s not true, once every two years or so, European championships get nearly as much conversation time as the World Cup.
Yesterday, I was peacefully leaving work, at the same time I leave every Monday evening, 5 pm, to pick up my daughter at the nanny’s then fight with traffic to pick up my son before 6pm at school. Yes, I leave my son until 6 pm at school pretty much every day, yes, I feel guilty as hell about it, and no I don’t for the moment have an alternative. The only thing that makes me feel better about this whole situation is he is never the last one there, so there are at least other more indecent parents (nothing like comparing yourself to others to feel better about yourself).
I usually manage to drive the 13 km between the nanny’s house and my son’s school in a little over 30 minutes, usually. Once a year, when 1 mm of snow falls from the sky (but doesn’t stay on the ground) it takes me about 3 hours to do the 13 km, but that is rare, and usually makes me laugh more than cry. Other than the yearly really stupid commute, I generally find it ridiculous that the road ways are so poor around here that it takes me more than 30 minutes to drive 13 km. I don’t live in a city, and I don’t work in a city, so this just shouldn’t happen. On country roads from one “village” to another, I’m averaging 26km/h.
Yesterday however, it was another story. Yesterday, the majority of the industrial park where I work decided they would all collectively leave at 5 p.m. So my 13 km took me TWICE as long. 60 MINUTES TO TRAVEL 13 KM!!!!!!
And why on Earth did everyone have a simultaneous brain fart and decide that they would all leave work an hour earlier than usual? Well, because soccer. France was playing at 6 pm, so everyone just had to be wherever they had to be when that game started. The entire, okay, okay, I’m exaggerating…the majority of the French population adjusted their schedules to watch a soccer game that frankly speaking doesn’t really affect their lives any more than it affects mine. And while the importance of soccer can be debated at length (and it has), my opinion remains unchanged, it is and will forever remain just a game.
That said…woohoo, France is in the quarter finals!!!