I’m not good with surprises.
Which is probably why when I showed up to meet Christophe’s family in Poland, they told us that they had a surprise for us. They told us to show up the next day and wear “clothes for sport.”
This already didn’t sound like a good surprise.
But when you’re a foreign country tag-along and you are flexing your be-a-good-sport muscle, you show up the next day with “clothes for sport” and pray to God that they aren’t taking you to paintball.
I’m smiling in the photo but I’m thinking, How did I get roped into this mess.
Here’s how it goes. There are two teams and you all try to shoot each other with paintballs that hurt like hell. Imagine being hit with a marble that is hurled at you with an air gun.
The family is very friendly and gentle… off the field… but once they get out there, it’s war. Mr. Gentle Christophe was the last to come in from the playing field and was happy to show off his paint blotched “gun shots.”
|007 in his element.|
I, however, went through the motions, but I was pretty much psyched once I got shot and HAD to (got to) leave the playing field.
|If I had to defend the country, we’d all be screwed.|
Then there was the youngest player, Milena, who got shot by her brother and came off the field yelling something in Polish that I suspect went something like, “LUCAS [SOMETHING ABOUT BEING A BULLY AND SHOOTING HER TOO CLOSE IN THE HAND AND NOW IT HURTS REALLY BAD] LUCAS!!!!!! [MORE ABOUT HOW SHE WISHES SHE WERE NEVER BORN TO A FAMILY WITH OLDER BROTHERS WHO SUCK] LUCAS!!! [IS JUST A BAD HUMAN BEING AND NOW MY HAND HURTS AND IT IS NO GOOD TO BE ME RIGHT NOW BECAUSE OF] LUCAS!!!!!!]
So I can understand Polish as well as a dog:
|Far Side cartoon by Gary Larson. So good.|
Lucas on the other hand was quite pleased with himself, as was his brother Conrad.
|Boys with toys.|
And after sitting out one game and getting the magical kiss-to-make-it-better from her mother, Milena WENT BACK OUT THERE.
|Mother’s kisses work wonders.|
I took her injury as a warning to sit out the last few games. My hands are my moneymakers. Plus, getting shot at sucks.
Later at the hotel, Christophe pranced in front of the mirror in his undies admiring his welts while I scrounged through my bag looking for Advil for mine.
|I’m smiling here because we are done.|