When I was in the primary school a few years ago I was quite active in sports and games. I was the B division long jump champion and an above-average sprinter. So I was chosen to represent the school in lone jump and relay in the District Sports Meet.
The meet was held over two days. On the first day, I did not have any event on. So I busied myself watching the others compete. As kids, we were not allowed to go near the VIP pavilion so I had to watch the proceedings from afar.
The young cOmpetitors were provided with large tents opposite the VIP pavilion on the other side of the track. My school team was assigned the last tent that was furthest from the track. It was just our luck but we made the best use of what we had.
On the second day. I prepared for my events. The long jump was scheduled early in the afternoon followed by the 8 x 50 m relay later on.
I reckoned I was a pretty good jumper but as the competition got underway I realized that y was far outclassed. ! managed 3.65 m which was not too bad. Then along came a typhoon who jumped well over 4 m! That was quite an achievement for a boy of ten. The fact that he was wearing. spikes did not make things easier for the other competitors. We completed our jumps and I was edged to fourth place, just missing a medal.
That was a disappointment but I told myself- that we still had a chance in the 8 x 50 m relay, I was put to run the fifth leg.
The time came for the race. We trooped to our respective positions and got ready for the race, After a tense minute or so, I heard the starter’s gun go off. The first runners started running, I watched with bated breath as my team runners kept up a good pace with the others. As they neared me I judged that we were in the second position at the least.
My turn came. I collected the baton cleanly and started my run. The air rushed past me as I made good progress towards the next runner. Then tragedy struck! From out of nowhere I saw a boy run across the track into my path. It happened so quickly that I could not avoid him. We collided with a crunch and was sent somersaulting over him. Being young and agile I was able to pick myself up quickly and continued the race. But the collision lost us precious time. When I passed the. baton to the next runner. I knew all was lost, He ran with all his might but it was too late. We had lost our chance for a medal.
We were young at that time and did not know how to protest. So we just assumed that it was bad luck. I, for one, really felt bad for letting the team down, but what did was done and we had to take it. So finished the meet empty-handed. It had been an eventful day for me although not very rewarding. Anyhow, I learned about failure and success and how to handle them, For the lessons am grateful.