The Life & Times Of An Amateur Archer
Hurrah, finally an evening when I can actually settle down and do some archery blogging and general faffery!
One of the things that I had said that I was planning to write a post on was the social side of archery and how I’ve found things (yes, I am feeling a little indulgent tonight so I’m afraid this post is even more about my personal experiences than usual but frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn!).
When I randomly decided to take up archery I did so to help me get over spending half the time stressed out of my head over a ton of personal strain and being so miserable that I could barely conjure up enough energy to drag myself to work. Safe to say that finding myself counted amongst the singletons was a bit of a shock for me and that the last 7 months have been a bit of a rollercoaster for me, my friends and my poor family.
Fortunately I have finally managed to turn a corner, close a few doors and open some new ones at last. And I’m 99% sure that archery and the people at the club have had a lot to do with it. Ok, so sometimes I still show up at the field with a face like thunder and occasionally I struggle with keeping work rubbish from ruining my shots, but overall I think that it’s got a whole lot better!
It might be that I am particularly lucky but the club that I’ve joined does seem to be especially sociable. Perhaps it’s been helped by my unfailing ability to talk at pretty much anyone that looks like they might listen, but I have found everyone super friendly and lovely to hang out with as well as shoot alongside. The after-shoot drinks are always a good giggle.
I suppose there’s something about joining a group of people to do a sport or hobby – you’re all there for the same reasons (generally anyway) and there is plenty of neutral ground to get chatting over, even if it’s as simple as ‘where is such and such’ or ‘do you know why blah, blah, blah doesn’t seem to be working’ and archery is no exception.
In fact, I’ve would count a lot of the guys and dolls that I shoot with as more than just archery colleagues and they have proved, in many ways, to be the kinds people that I
wouldn’t have met in any other setting.
Take L… she is 13 going on about 30 and has quite possibly the most hilariously innocent and giggly sense of humour of anyone that I’ve met in a very long time. Her ability to pull such funny faces and snigger at almost anything has me in stitches more often than not and it definitely makes us a nightmare pair when we are shooting on the line together.
Her father D is also hysterical. His ‘dad’ face has me apologising for things I haven’t even thought about doing in my most mischievous moods. Last week’s dressing down culminated in ‘what makes you think it’s even as good as me being ‘ashamed’ of you?’ and still makes me chuckle when I think about it now.
J’s innocence in the face of our onslaught of piss-taking never ceases to amaze me – he still insists on calling rabbits ‘bunnywabbits’ which is a little odd for a 32 year old chap. A is a giggle simply because his intensity comes off him in waves and the smallest distraction causes the vein in the side of his temple to pulse just that little bit more.
S and I are pretty much the worst of the lot; wisely the club secretary decided that we weren’t trustworthy enough to be mentor and mentee (we can’t even look at one another without grinning) but when we are at the field it takes a stern word or two from the resident Grandaddies to make us behave ourselves… and it never seems to last for long!
I guess that what I am trying to say is that despite archery being essentially is an individual sport with potentially very little interaction with other people, it is really what you (and the other nutters in your club) make it and they can become some really good buddies – I know I’ve definitely made more than a few over these last couple of months… and now to hunt down and find a few more!
TODD PACK | Writer & Editor
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