I have coached Sharks,
and now the DTAgs (some of whom have now passed me in height), and Erin was on the field with all the iterations except the last. Some of you wonder why I still go out to the pitch with the girls, since Erin can no longer join in.
It usually isn't too hard. I love soccer. I love the players. It keeps me young and fit(ter) to stay involved. I miss Erin terribly, of course. I estimate that I actively think about her about 50% of my waking hours that I'm not actively involved in something else. I carry her around with me, and at soccer practice and games, I'm not usually bothered that transcendent Erin has taken the place of running, tackling, and striking Erin.
Last night, however, was an exception. Our soccer team is doing some non-soccer team building and since the fields were unplayable, we took the opportunity to do a little preparation for our upcoming Iron Chef competition. It struck me how Erin would have absolutely adored the idea of competitive cooking: design the menu, find the recipes, shop for the ingredients, whip up the meal, and serve it (all with your friends), so that you could WIN a competition.
I followed the girls on my team around Kroger. They checked prices and weighed the merits of buying a bag of lemons versus a specific number of lemons. I answered questions like
"Why can't we just buy one celery stalk if that's all we need?"
"What's a dressed snapper and why can't we just buy a naked one?" and
"These spices are expensive. Do we really need them to cook?"
The whole experience almost took my breath away. I could feel my nostrils start to burn like I had tweezed out some nose hairs (a sure sign I'm thinking strong thoughts about Erin). I