Saturday, February 7, 1981


Dad woke me up at seven-thirty and I set off for school an hour-and-a-quarter later. All the Rakesburn lot were already there, and soon Andy rolled up. I was surprised to see Ingham was refereeing the match. I think he was more surprised to see me and he seemed quite taken aback that I was actually playing rugby. Gradually everyone arrived and after changing and everything we were down on the pitch for half-past nine. I was again playing at No. 5. I felt much easier.

The opposition was really quite small and we had no difficulty opening them up. Abbott eventually got a try and Briscoe missed the conversion so the score was 5-0 at half-time. I did better than on previous occasions  – sometimes I even got the ball. I felt really pleased when I managed to pass it over to David McCall and occasionally I found myself with the ball. I ran for a gap before I was hurled violently to the ground. The second half went OK; we scored two more tries and a penalty, making it 18-0 at full time. I spewed up shortly before the end, but carried on and felt better. It must be because I’m not used to it.

Then, in the final minute of the match, I pushed into a loose scrum and everyone fell over; I caught my right leg, and I felt it wrench. Agony! Ingham helped me up and I hopped as far as the path at the edge of the pitch before I fell over. My calf had seized up and the pain was unrelenting. Some of the players and staff massaged my calf and pried my foot back into its normal position. My calf was taut and it still aches as I'm writing this. I must’ve done it some damage. In retrospect I must’ve looked like a real berk, and perhaps I overreacted in a way. After the match, people kept saying I was getting better and had played well and I quite enjoyed it I suppose. Somehow I get the impression I’ll start being relied on, and if so, I will have to start going to training.

I got back home after eleven and Mum and Dad came back with Nanna P. an hour or so later, and I spent all afternoon just sat watching TV, half-intending to go into Easterby and have my hair cut.

Tonight I’ll continue reading Sabine’s History of Political Philosophy, a massive 930-page book that I pretend to myself I’ll read all the way through but I bet I don’t, because the middle of the book is about turgid Mediaeval Church/King politics. I read Chapter 1 on Thursday and Chapter 2 about Athens and the City states etc. last night. It’s quite interesting.

No doubt about what I’m looking forward to tomorrow!

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