My mother was the fifth child of seven and the only daughter of Irish immigrants. She grew up watching her father and her six brothers play football, or soccer, for Irish Rifles in Christchurch. Then, after we moved north, she watched her sons, my three brothers, play for Eden-Roskill, and then my sons, her grandsons, play for Albany-Wairau.
She called me today with a tear in her voice to tell me the wonder of now watching from the sideline as her great grandson plays soccer for Ranui-Swanson. “Little children running after the ball like bees after a honey pot,” she said. “I never knew my grandparents back home in Ireland. What a privilege it is to stand on the sideline, watching a fifth generation play football. Those little people have made my week.”
Go Zachy! Go Great Grandma!