last sunday, we were invited to play capture the flag at a local orphanage in the early afternoon. we spent the morning doing laundry and lesson planning at a coffeeshop. then we hopped into a cab destined for downtown. we met up with some friends at the ymca there and took another bus out to the orphanage. the church our friends attend volunteer once a month, playing games and doing activities with the kids who stay there.
i was instantly impressed with the place – the facillities were nice, colorful, and clean. the location was actually still in the heart of the city (for some reason, i’d been picturing a remote, run-down locale), and it had been there for years. the young man who was managing there now told us his great-grandparents had started the orphanage in the early 1920s. and, of course, the kids were full of joy and enthusiasm.
the kids (along with most of the male volunteers) took the game incredibly seriously, even doling out our positions to us (defense! offense! stand here!). i took my defensive stance and guarded the flag for well over an hour, chatting w/the other foriengers who were volunteering. no one ever actually won the game, but it was a great way to spend an afternoon. i hope we’ll get back there regularly to help out.
we had to leave a little early to make it to a 5:00 baseball game: the beloved gwangju KIA TIGERS vs the LG TWINS from seoul. gotta love the names. in the confusion of trying to buy 12 tickets, a guy came up to us and gave us a handful of free tickets. we were stoked! we found our seats and proceeded to be blown away by the bottomless enthusiasm and cheering of the crowd. i have never been to a more animated baseball game. everyone had noise sticks that they beat in-time to various chants. the best was when the wave started – it made it THREE solid times around the stadium. we wondered if it would ever stop. everyone brought in copious amounts of food, so in the spirit of things, our little group purchased and shared chips and fried chicken as we watched.
the game went into overtime and we all headed home since we had to be up early to teach the next day. back at our apartment, david turned on the game just in time to see the KIA tigers hit a grand slam to win it! gotta admit, we felt a little pride for our “home” team.