There is a lot of jealousy around the country, because for the last 33 years Saint has been almost unbeatable. When they came second at Nationals last year they were faced with a lot of name calling and downright nastiness from some of the other teams. I find that very sad, because I always feel that we allow our children to do sport, because we want to teach them some very valuable lessons, not least of which is how to lose with dignity and that they do sport for the love of the game and not to win! Winning is a good feeling, of course, but it should never be everything. ( Sorry! I will get off my little soap box now!)
The first picture is one I took while the girls were training - as you can see the parents trained just as hard as they did! They were practcing war cries and having so much fun that I soon found myself amongst them, singing and cheering with them.
The next picture is one I took while the girls were listening to a speech by their trainer, Alan Donaldson. What a man! He is such a role model to all the girls and inspires them to give just that little bit more when they think that they can not possibly carry on! The shirts say it all.
The next picture is very bad, but I think you will be able to just make out all the trophies that the girls won at the Indoor competition. They won every category except for Mace, where they came 4th. The squad in the red and black track suits is us.
This brings us to why I feel so honoured to be part of the Saint Dominic's Family. From the first moment I spent watching the competition from the stands I knew why these girls were so succesful. Their parents are FANTASTIC! Not only were they all wearing the Saints track suits and singing war cries and bashing empty bottles filled with stones to make a noise, but they were doing it for every squad that marched that came from Gauteng (the province we live in). I have to tell you I have never been so cold in my whole life! During the outdoor competition, it was -1 degrees on the stands, so getting up was a BIG effort!
They never once lost enthusiasm and when they relised that I did not own antything red to wear, I had about 20 offers from people to lend me some of their jackets.
Our girls were on top form and brought home every trophy there was on offer. Their leader dropped her mace at the beginning of the big outdoor march and hit herself on the head. She told us later that she felt herself falling when she heard one of her team mates tell her, "Come on Kelly, You can't go down, we need you! You CAN do it! Get up, get up, just do it!" She said that is what made her carry on and finish the march. She continued to march and did the whole routine with her eyes closed, because she was to dizzy when she opened her eyes! She didn't miss another beat and was named the national leader of the year!
We stayed at a game lodge and these buck were lying just outside our rooms one morning. How amazing is that?