A Teenage Boy Experience in the African Society
In the town of Lilongwe, Malawi, Africa a team of boys line up as they get ready to play their favorite game. I was among those boys as I keenly waited to be picked to join either of the teams. My name was finally picked among the last but I was overjoyed as the last time no team wanted me. We had just moved to Lilongwe and I was trying to prove myself and show the other boys that I knew how to play soccer. A group of young girls watched at a distance as the match began.
The ball was not really professional. The first time I saw a real soccer ball was several years later at a stadium. I was amazed at how the real soccer ball bounced up and down. Our custom ball was made of nothing but plastic bags stuffed together. This particular ball looked much more complex than the one we used to make in my former village. I looked intensely at the ball wondering if they would teach me to make it after the match. The soccer ball was muddy but resilient despite the brute force applied by the boys to kick it.
The regional game began
There was no whistle blown, just the shout of one of the team members. I later came to realize that in many sports, a whistle should be blown to mark the start of the game. The game also had no referee or linesman. We did not require the help of these professionals because this game was purely for fun and enjoyment and the only trophy that the winning team got was pride and recognition. My team comprised of seven members while the opponent team had six members. I realized that the other team did not regard me as a good player therefore they allowed the number to be uneven. I was determined to prove them wrong.
The match continued smoothly with the other team scoring one goal. The striker was a fat boy who I realized had fitness as the motivation for playing. He had got a lot of rebuke from his peers about his weight and therefore joined soccer. Surprisingly, he was really good at it. As the game progressed I was open and ready to score but my team member who wielded the ball appeared not to trust me. He therefore took the risk of trying to score but the opponent stole the ball from him. I looked at him with a grimace but his face showed no regret.
It was half time
The other team still led by one goal. Since we did not have a clock, halftime usually started when Makonge, the eldest, was tired. He was also the owner of the custom ball. Our team met around a tree to make a strategy and to encourage each other. I pointed out that we needed to play as a team but my words were ignored. The boys preferred to go and socialize with the girls as they waited for Makonge to catch his breath. Makonge sat at the end of the field with a packet of cakes that he selfishly gobbled up. After a few minutes he motioned with his finger as he swallowed the last cake. The final half was here.
The game continued and the other team looked determined to score another goal. Many people in this society wonder how to lose weight fast and the simple answer is to be determined like this opponent team. I realized that if we lost, our team would be a laughing stock since we had the advantage of numbers. We did not have positions like in professional soccer matches and therefore anybody could score or defend. The only pre-determined position was the goal keeper.
The game continued without a goal from any of the teams
I noticed that Makonge was getting tired. One of my team mates grudgingly decided to pass the ball to me as I was the only one undefended. I skillfully dribbled the ball across the field and I had the element of surprise as the opponents underestimated me. I got to the defender and I gracefully went past him as I left him in sudden shock. I aimed the ball and shot.
I heard my teammates shout in bewilderment as they celebrated. The odds were now in my favor. When the game ended, we were the winners. From then on, I was always the first to be picked by any team.