Chapter 4: Messages

Chris Avery, Columbia Avenue FC coach, was calling and texting me during the past few hours.

Then another message flashed.

‘Hey Yom, hope you’re doing good. Apologies for contacting you this soon – I know you have been enjoying the break. If you’re free on Thursday, please inform me. Hope we can privately discuss the future of this team in the Pro League. The Legionnaires deserve to play a notch higher. We are staying in this league for as long as possible.’

I wonder what the calls and messages are for – although I think I know the answer.

Has he already found out that practice session with AC McKinley? Honestly I’m not sure.

Well, it was just a game, an invitational pre-season training.

Perhaps ACM is interested with players from the second tier, but it’s too early to say. And why would the top dog from Pro League invest time and money on someone from the Colleagiate League? They have all the money to pirate a player of premium calibre from Pro League, even from other leagues.

Thinking about ACM getting me? Plainly ridiculous. Burch has had the impression of becoming too flowery with words. And those mean nothing but air.

Nothing but a candid invitation to train.

***

Thursday, 09:00. Two consecutive beeps awakened me.

‘Damn, I should really kick the habit of putting my iPhone beside me.’

The messages came from Sonny and Chris.

Sonny: Hello Yom, good morning! Will definitely see you today, 13:00 at North Empire. Yes? :) I need to further see your skills and heart on the pitch.

Chris: Hello Yom, hope to hear confirmation for today’s meeting at 15:00. Please come earlier – we have to privately discuss your future role in this team. And just to give a hint, it’s very critical. See you later – I’ll bring you to the newest ramen bar.

Critical role as a Legionnaire?

I know I can deliver for the team, but other people can assume that role. They have developed chemistry with the team. Connection seems fluid and natural. Which is not true for me. Most of the time I feel isolated, if not different.

I don’t belong here.

‘Thinking too much again,’ I murmur. ‘These are just text messages – why does it take me much time replying?’

So I start composing text messages mindlessly. Message sent.

What an amusing morning. Even I am surprised with my spontaneity.

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