It takes a lot of guts to go off to university, knowing basically no one and reinvent yourself. Seriously. Entering this huge institution where you will be spending the next three years of your life. The first six weeks of this are pivotal; hence why I joined Ultimate Frisbee.
Of course, you must be thinking that I’m a weird pothead that doesn’t care about anything than getting “baked” and throwing a Frisbee around like a dog. But this is so far from the case. I’m a history student that just happened to not want to join the mainstream sports teams like Tennis or Netball. I’m so glad I went with my gut. My old friend from back home, Nathan, is the President of this sports club and on the sports open day he twisted my arm and made me come to one training session. I was dreading it. It came to 8pm on the following Sunday evening and I was seriously debating backing out as, yes, I judged it. I thought it weird and quite frankly pointless at first glance. Oh how wrong I was. Even though I was pretty terrible, and yes, couldn’t master a skill that many 6 year old children can do, I was hooked. It felt like surreal that I was playing a sport that I didn’t even know existed two weeks prior.
The object of the game is to pass the Frisbee up and down the pitch in order for your team to catch the disc in the end zone. You either start as the offensive team or defensive, depending on whether or not you start with the disc. But what kind you are, offence or defence, changes many times during one point (indication) as you will inevitably be “D’d” or drop it. Or if you’re like me, throw it straight off the pitch. This unfortunately is not a rare occurrence.
But what I love most about this sport is the kind of people it attracts. These people are a special breed of human; the beautiful kind. They like “popular” sports, but understand that Frisbee offers so much more. If you want to think of clique formations in America, they would be the mismatch bunch from several different tables being drawn together by the love of this peculiar game.
What they have helped me understand is to not care what people think of me. At school I was captain/ vice captain of teams, I participated in the school plays, “bitched” along with the “cool” group. I wasn’t the real me. But since coming along to UEA, what the Frisbee’s (Aye-Aye) have helped me understand is that you don’t have to please others in order to please yourself.
Ultimate is a wonderful sport full of even more wondrous people. Recently, I went on a Freshers tournament in Loughborough. As the games are self-reffed, it meant that the atmosphere is amazing. Even if you lose (which we did….. on our first game), you still make amazing friends. I remember meeting this one guy, I still do not know his name, and for the whole weekend we just threw the disc and when it came to us being rivals we would always mark each other and have such a laugh. You can be serious when you want to be, but most of the time not.
What I often forget is that I’ve only playing it for about a month, so when I make a mistake, I get really angry with myself. But they are so forgiving, and when the session is done, we usually head down to the pub for a few snakebites. Even these little things are so precious to me. Don’t even get me started on big Wednesdays!
Aye-Aye have made me feel at home and I cannot wait to spend the next three years forming friendships that will last for life.