My day in a cricket scorebox…
Like with this autism diagnosis that governs a large part of my life, cricket scoring has that regimentation and routine that helps focus my mind, helps me concentrate. It’s like a peace of mind that assists me in being in a better place mentally.
I turn up reasonably early, say about an hour or so before the start. I have various paraphernalia with me, my laptop computer if I’m doing live scoring, a notepad to copy the teams down onto, and a wifi connection. I collect the scorebook and the spare cricket balls and set up camp in the box. I want to be prepared, I don’t like being rushed.
I say hi to some members of either side that I know, share a bit of banter and say hello to my partner in crime (if I have one) and the umpires for the day. We are the third team in a game of cricket and it’s important that we communicate well so that mistakes are kept to a minimum. Easier said than done.
Then after the toss is done, we are all ready to go. Watching the best game in the world, being involved and enjoying what I do helps to keep my feet on the ground. Some of the spectators and players walk past the box to say hello, and as I said, it’s a peaceful existence for me. Not on the field making decisions. I’ve had 30 years of that. Back to where I started. This seems so right that I see no reason to return to umpiring….but never say never of course!
I go in for tea, I get brought cold drinks from the clubhouse and all in all, as long as I don’t muck up royally, I’ve had a good day. When the match is over, I have a refreshing drink and mull over the match with the club members and the participants. There may be sport on the TV that adds to the excellent atmosphere in the club, plenty of jagged banter flying around and I’m on the receiving end…but I’ve been there so long that it usually goes in one ear and out of the other.
Yes it’s a long day, but it’s a day that keeps me out of trouble and I like being around the game of cricket and the people that play it, score it, umpire it, watch it, prepare teas and do the bar, prepare the grounds, etc. It’s a game that is one of the most social on earth. And long may that continue. And as long as cricket helps my well being to stay stable, I’ll always be involved.