I’ve just moved into a lovely part of Brighton, called Preston Park and the other night, I took a walk around the park itself.
It was one of those beautifully peaceful, warm (some would say balmy but that’s not a word I typically use for some reason) summer evenings when everything seems right with the world.
As I strolled slowly around the edges of the park, I was struck by the sheer variety of activities taking place. First to get my attention was the ubiquitous football pre-season training match, followed by a large group of people playing ultimate frisbee.
Then there was my favourite; tennis – across six different courts. The thing that most encouraged me by this sight was the fact that most of the people playing didn’t appear to be that good, which will help me summon up the courage to potentially join their club, and not feel like the worst player they had ever seen!
Then I came across what is traditionally an older man’s sport, bowls. There were however, one or two teenagers amongst them, and as I stood behind the fence watching for a few minutes, I remembered how I should used to watch a similar looking bunch when I was a teenager. It’s not the most exciting sport in the world but somehow, the similarity with marbles used to captivate and even help me to relax.
This was followed by some table tennis and finally, some street performers rehearsing their tight-rope walking between the trees.
As I pondered and truly enjoyed this low-level, local sporting spectacle, I couldn’t help but think about those who may have felt like much of their life has been more about spectating than taking part. The people who for one reason or another, are always the ones waving goodbye to loved ones travelling to far off lands, or cheering on those who have studied, trained, worked for this moment, this event, or that achievement.
Or perhaps you are one of those who has done a lot of fun things in your life, travelled to many places, met many interesting people but somehow, you still feel like you are the one looking on?
Perhaps take some time this summer to come up with a plan to get yourself involved somewhere, anywhere – it doesn’t really matter, so long as you dare to step out of your comfort zone.
Or like me, take a look at who’s already involved and dare to believe you won’t be the worst one they have ever seen!