Spent the Weekend at the Gathering in Birmingham. Got all of about 40mins sleep over the two nites and as our accomodation was without shower facilities I came home smelling fresh and looking well rested *cough* (3 of us fell asleep in the live album recording at the conference and got more sleep there than we had the previous nite, which gives you some idea of the rowdiness of the boys followed up by the "chain-saw wielding grizzly bear snorer" who incidently was wearing superman pyjamas)
It was a good weekend tho, most of the leaders nicked off Saturday afternoon to grab a pub lunch and watch England take Italy in the rugby and got inspired to start a game of sleeping bag rugby back at the church hall we were sleeping in that nite. The mental game that followed saw my pillow used as the ball and a bunch of lads go hard at it for a good half an hour before someone innevitably got hurt and we decided to stop. Typically, I was responsible for the hurt (fortunatley this hurt was more about someone being a wuss than any actual injury, my elbow on the other hand will be making its way to the doctors for an x-ray on the chip from December that I managed to bash on the ground as I took one lad out) This BIG lad on the other team, who fortunately had no idea how to play rugby whatsoever, had the "ball" and I was pushing him back towards his own line with it but he wouldnt fall over and so I ducked low and launched up lifting him off the ground and then dump tackling him to the cheers of my team. "That's an Australian tackle!!" was the cry from Pete (resident rugby guru) before we realised he was hurt. Now I suspect that the fella was just winded but we took it as a good break in the game to end on and cut it out before anyone actually got hurt.
Some other hilarity from the trip involved our complete lack of ability to form a working convoy of cars, innevitably we got seperated and then lost despite having 2 sat navs!! Tim launched into a beautiful rant at the lads on the first nite after about an hour of chaos post lights out, which ended with "you're embarrassing yourself and your church!!" which silenced the whole room except for Matt, Pete, and I trying to contain our laughter with little success for about ten mins. (I should mention our group were amazingly well behaved and the model of respect and sense, seriously proud of them) Matts rant the following nite worked well until he ended on the line "Im not angry, Im just dissapointed" which completely destroyed the effect of the rant as everyone cracked up laughing again. And lastly, my genius was well employed when I got the tech guys to put a message on the screens asking Tim to go to First Aid (something he'd been dreading happening since we got there) He came back very confused until he saw the rest of us smirking and ticked to what was going on!!
*the Gathering is a youth event run by the Elim network of Churches
A great touch to the waiting times in the hall were some of the songs and ensuing fun that were played by the good natured techies for our entertainment. There was a giant Conga line to Sweet Marie Who Waits For Me and just general dancing and enjoyment to The Saints Are Coming by U2 and Greenday. This song was so good I googled it as soon as I got home and found this clip on YouTube. Enjoy!!