Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The Pawsox and a beautiful Sunday in Providence

For those of you beyond the pale of professional baseball or Rhode Island sports teams, the Pawtucket Red Sox, or "Pawsox," is one of the farm clubs of the Boston Red Sox organization. Their home games are played at the very family-oriented McCoy Stadium in Pawtucket.

Once before we tried to see a Pawsox game some years ago with Dick and Dorothy but for one reason or another it never came off.

Now that we lived in nearby Providence, we felt we had no more excuses not to get to a game, particularly now that we can buy tickets and choose seats right online (just the like the airlines but with less turbulence).

Sunday morning was an early day in our house -- I took Joyce and Carl to T. F. Green semi-international airport for their flight to Philly and then a connection to Columbia, South Carolina. (I'll pick them up this coming Friday.)

After a leisurely morning at home, right around noon Susie and I headed off amidst partly sunny skies and low humidity to find Pawtucket and the stadium. Traffic was a bit snarled -- the stadium is located in the middle of a working class neighborhood of duplexes and triple-decker homes -- but it really is a small place after all and we were smoothly directed into nearby gameday parking (which is free by the way).

From the parking lot we walked all of a block to the stadium, found the box office, picked up our tickets and walked inside to watch the Pawsox play the Indianapolis Indians.

It had been years since either one of us had been in a ballpark and I had this image of dity facilities and cement benches -- but McCoy Stadium looked new, or at the very least well-maintained. Clean rest rooms, and signs everywhere pointed to past baseball glories or to one family event or another. The seats were comfortable and under the protection of the overhang. By the time the game started the place was packed.

I must say we were both appalled at the incredible volume of junk food that everyone, and I mean nearly everyone, seemed determined to eat. So many people around us spent much of their time either eating junk food or getting up and going and getting junk food.

Anyway, the day was glorious, the weather nearly perfect and the game thoroughly enjoyable. (It was nice, too, that the Pawsox beat the Indians 3-2.)

Susie and I stayed after the game and watched the "traditional" running of the bases, this time led off by the "Little Sisters of the Poor," a local order of nuns.

We couldn't have thought of a better way to spend three hours on a beautiful Sunday afternoon.

It was an easy drive home where we ordered pizza from Fellini's (shaved steak and scallion) washed down with a delicious rosé from Spain.

That night I slept like a log.

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