A Tied Score
My memories of following my son Jerry’s baseball games were awakened anew as I drove to the Bernard Ball Park to see the Over Forty Game on a late September Sunday afternoon.
This sunny day had the right temperature for playing ball and a needed shady area to watch from.
The country was beautiful with waving fields of corn, alfalfa sprouting beneath the oats stubbles, giving a promise of a bountiful harvest.
The road banks held the fall array of white chapel veil, purple asters, goldenrod and bushes of sumac so familiar before weed spray was initiated.
I drove my 78 Model Oldsmobile into the ballpark and found a middle aged man and his son sitting on a short bridge collecting admittance fees to the park. A friendly smile and a forced wave to go forward assured me that Senior Citizens were admitted free.
A crowd of young and old had gathered under shade trees to watch the many overweight, over forty challenge a team of younger players all in spiffy uniforms as the P.A. System announced the teams, their players, batting averages and the next batter up.
The lively young ball team scored five runs in the first eight innings. With a bit of good luck the Forty Plus scored their five runs in the ninth inning. The P.A. System announced the final score was a tie.
Both sides met in a friendly hand shake as they closed the ball season for another year.
As I sat in my car in the shade I saw life so interesting.
Many women from the village were seated on folding chairs in the shade enjoying visiting as they cheered their home team’s luck in tying the score.
An elderly short stalky man with graying hair and well trimmed beard appeared holding a medium homemade picture frame with a heavy cord hanger. He approached his elderly acquaintances and said “Can you believe what you see in this picture?” After looking closely at the picture the man responded “I can’t believe all those old ball players are already dead— aren’t they?”
In silence they both seemed to be offering a prayer before they exchanged comments about the picture.
Many of the over forty ball players were friends who had picked up bales of hay many summers for me. They would drop by to say “hello” and reminisce the haying days before the new big bale modem machines could roll up a big bale that holds as much as thirty small bales they had worked with.
I drove away from the Bernard Ball Park with a lively spirit, knowing life still holds that wonderful feeling of a community still alive repeating the past.