It has been nearly 30 consecutive years, on this weekend that I have played, coached and organized volleyball at the Bay State Games (Massachusetts State Olympics). This is the first year in its history that I have not participated and I do miss seeing some of the friends that I’ve made over the years, but it was kind of nice not be be in a gym on a beautiful summer day.
I have quite a few stories from this tournament as a player and a coach, but my favorite is from the perspective as an organizer.
For a few years in the 90’s I served as the tournament director for the event and part of my responsibility was to set up the nets and make sure everything was in place for the weekend’s competition. My contact at MIT was really excited when she told me that they had purchased brand new nets for us. So when I got there Friday evening to set up, they were new allright — new tennis nets! (Of course, they threw away the old nets.) After a mad scramble and a revised set up time on Saturday morning before the sun came up, the games came off without a hitch.
Another is the time I was hit in the face so hard by a spike that I saw stars. The team was celebrating at the facial so exuberantly, that they didn’t see the ball bounce off my face and drop on their side of the net for a point! Too bad I didn’t get to see the whole play! 😉