On Friday, I ended up staying late after school. Since I left school around 6pm, I was able to catch an amazing sunset off in the west behind several mountains. The color of the sky was absolutely beautiful, golden reds and oranges. It made me smile and I couldn’t help but think that things will turn out just fine. In the beginning of the week, I didn’t have the same mentality. Things were horrible.
On Monday evening, my car was broken into. The radio, car documents, and my CDs were stolen. To enter the car, the thief broke the back window and unlocked the car. I didn’t realize it had happened until someone later informed me. And still yet, I didn’t fully understand everything that had happened until one of the drivers, Fabien, came back and told me the details. Tuesday was just awful for me. I couldn’t believe that something else had happened to me. In four weeks, I have had my knee injured, a bacteria (or malaria, whatever it may have been), and now this! A rush of negative thoughts filled my head for most of the week. In my mind, I wondered when my bad luck would end. Many of my coworkers cheered me up with their kind words. It helped out tremendously because I was really down and depressed. So, on Friday evening, I was finally beginning to feel better as the weekend began to roll in.
My friends, Izumi, Harrison, Ian and I left the house Saturday afternoon excited about the soccer match,between Cameroon and Egypt. This was a crucial game played at the Yaounde stadium, which decided whether or not Cameroon would enter World Cup 2006. As we headed towards the stadium we felt the excitement and joy in the air. Looking out the window we saw people standing in the streets cheering, motorcycles carrying people up to the stadium, people selling Cameroon soccer jerseys, and just pure anticipation for the game. As we drove towards the stadium, the national team drove by us on their charter bus. Everyone broke out in cheers.
The stadium was packed, people were cheering in the street and bars were filled with spectators. Cameroon scored the first point and everyone went wild. Egypt came back to score, tying the match. In the last two minutes of the game, Cameroon needed to make a goal. Their position in the world cup depended on a win. Egypt, regardless if they won or lost, would not enter the World Cup. Cameroon cheered as the referees granted a penalty kick. Now, I don’t ‘know much about soccer, but it seems to me that a penalty kick is pretty much a free goal. It is one player against the goalie, who has to guard an entire goal from this one players kick. The ball hit the right goalpost and off to the right of the goal and Cameroon missed their chance at the World Cup. People were angry. The originally cheering crowd , waited outside the stadium to throw rocks at the team bus, only to be chased away by the police. The mood in the air definitely changed.
By the way, you might think that I went to the game, but I didn’t. We had tickets, but we didn’t attend. Instead we watched the game across the street at a bar with a group of other people. At first I was disappointed that we didn’t go. This was Cameroon’s national soccer team playing for the World Cup. Then I thought to myself, for the last few weeks I have either been disappointed or sad. I want ed this day to be the day that I felt happy. I don’t regret not going, nor did I continue to feel disappointed. I watched the game with three other people who are just totally wonderful people. I realized that the friends that I have made here are great and I enjoy spending time with them. I was just so happy to be able to enjoy this experience with Izumi, Harrison, Ian, and Presley. It made me forget about all of the trouble I and made me realize I was fortunate to have such friends. And in the end that was more important to me.
I have received several emails from people. I have read them. I will reply (one day). But, thanks for the messages. Oh, one thing is for sure, the television we watched the game on provided us with great close-ups of the gorgeous Egyptian soccer players. I think my next move will be to Egypt! Enjoy the pictures and take care.