Saturday, July 30, 2011

the world in union...

What does this song mean to you?

It was just announced tonight that Hayley Westenra will be singing the ITV rugby world cup theme song this year. Not exactly knock your socks off, earth-shattering news for most people, and not for me either. But... all evening it's been stuck in my head which is a) getting a bit annoying b) making me really excited for world cup to begin and c) brought back some of the most traumatising memories of my childhood.

I hear this song and am taken back to being 11 years old watching this game. Heartbreaking stuff. Also a little traumatising is remembering the small crush I had on Justin Marshall when he had the blonde streaks through his hair. Ugh.

Of course my real loyalty lay with Bruce Reihana and my biggest memory of the 2003 world cup (apart from Johnny Wilkinson's very awkward kicking style and John Mitchell's shiny scalp) is being really peeved off about his absence from the squad. "BRING BACK BRUCE!"

A fonder, and probably my first ever rugby memory, is of Jonah Lomu running through players to the try line way back in 1995. My pet cow gave birth on the day of one of those matches and her calf was given tag number 11 in his honour. And also named Miss Lomu (shortened to Missy; she was the one we used to ride around on, although she was a little too pudgy to do this...). I also remember playing 'Jonah Lomu' in the backyard which involved one person clinging to the others legs and being dragged along the ground while the other ran in slow motion (well practiced while playing 'Bay watch' with a red flutterboard) towards a mock try line.

The most hardcore I have gone thus far for my rugby team.
Not long until rugby world cup begins which I am getting more and more excited about, spurred along by picking up my tickets last weekend. Not that I'm watching any Allblacks games (have you seen how much tickets costs?!) but I will be decked out in blue and white to support the second greatest team in the world, from the country with the best empanadas, Argentina. Go Pumas!

I have the rugby jersey, the flag and now to make the banner saying "Casate conmigo, Hernandez" (Marry me, Hernandez). Though no Dan Carter in the looks department, he (and the Pumas' unexpected success) were the highlight of the 2007 tournament for me - the light in the darkness of having to finish a bottle of wine at breakfast time to numb the pain of watching the Allblacks lose. God I hope that ref isn't going to be reffing any of their games this time around!
P.S. Here's a (pretty bad) photo of some kids playing their daily game of footy at the beach on Manono Island, Samoa. A blog entry about my trip there is on its way; I've just been so busy holidaying, then working, uni-ing, knitting and stuffing my face with the louise cake my flatmate baked today. It had homemade jam in it too :-D