Thursday, July 3, 2014

World Cup Connections

It was just another normal day at work where I ride down the hill on the tram to spend 20 to 30 minutes waiting at the research pharmacy to pick up medication for a patient. This time, however, Germany was playing Portugal and the score was already ridiculous - 3-0 Germany. I checked the score, since I had nothing else to do, and was shocked to see that Germany had scored again. My surprised intake of breath caught the attention of the man also waiting and playing with his phone.

Now, normally I would have exchanged a polite smile and returned to my private bubble. I'm not that great with small talk and I work under the all encompassing HIPPA regulations; it's just easier to politely keep to yourself.

"Germany just scored again." I blurted out instead and his eyebrows rose in surprise.
"You're watching the World Cup?" I don't really look like a soccer/futbol fan I guess.

And then we started chatting like old friends with different accents, comparing notes on teams and commiserating on our countries', Mexico and the USA, poor chances for making it past the first round. I told him that we're watching all the games on Univision and working on our Spanish and he directed me to the Univision app so that I could watch the games on my phone (which is what he'd been doing).

It was a connection that wouldn't have been made except for the world-wide excitement about The Cup.

I've thought of him while cheering Mexico on in each of their games (even though a win over the Netherlands would have completely broken my bracket!) and wondered if he remembered me when the US played each of their heart attack inducing games.

I don't think the game can save the world. But, oh does it open doors for some human interaction. And the bridging of different worlds, that is a small step in the right direction.

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