What a world cup it’s been! Today’s final between Germany and Argentina should be something to behold!
I’ve never played soccer, although my two daughters do, and my husband has coached it. Yet, the travels I’ve been fortunate enough to have this past month has made me realize how universal soccer (or football) is around the world. We are one, indeed.
At the end of June, I was in Germany on a river cruise with Tauck, and watched the Americans onboard cheer for their team, and the Germans and other Europeans delight in the win.
This past week, I was in Colombia, where soccer/ football is almost the country’s religion, it seems. It was quite an experience for my 14-year old daughter and I to be walking through a shopping mall in Medellin, Colombia as the Germany-Brazil game was on. (If you recall, Brazil had beat Colombia the week prior in a somewhat controversial loss. So, Colombians wanted Brazil to lose, and Germany was just the team to do it, they hoped.) I think in the half hour we were in that Medellin shopping mall, Germany scored 5 goals against Brazil. Every time Germany scored, the entire mall erupted. with shouts and screams and applause and everybody crowded around tv screens in stores. People walking through the mall holding up five fingers – cinco, yes, it’s true. I’d never seen anything like it. (Had we known there’d be that many goals, I would’ve pulled out my camera to videotape the reaction, but who’d have thought that Brazil would collapse that way.
Here’s a snippet we could hear from our 12th floor balcony when we returned to our hotel, and Germany beat Brazil.
Of course, soccer brings up national pride. But, the thing that struck my daughter and I as we stood in that shopping mall, wasn’t that Germany was trouncing Brazil – it was how happy and excited the entire population of Colombia was about a sporting event. How everyone came together in that half hour to cheer for something, and everyone was sharing the experience…. much as it had struck me while in Germany the week before, while I watched the USA-Germany game. It was amazing to me how one sport bring everyone around the world together in front of a tv set. We are indeed one.