It wouldn’t be the Panamerican Games if we didn’t get to have some fun, and so it happened that we were invited to take part in a local charity sports day at a local school. What makes it even better is that this school is a stone’s throw from one of our sports venues.
Dressed to in our sports wear we arrived in the neighborhood, not really knowing what to expect. The school is in one of the developing areas of the city with a lot of less advantaged families, and a lot of hope. The school is the vision of a passionate director who has been building it, in numbers as well as in brick and mortar, for the last 20 years.
The sports day was organised by a volunteer who is at the school full time, and it is clear they have so much passion and a “can do” attitude. The kids came over in 12 teams of 6 or so, each with a team name and war cry. The grownup kids got assigned to either a team or a sport, and handed a timetable for the day!
I had the privilege of being captain to “los leones”, a group of cheerful third graders. We took part in athletics, dodge ball, street dancing, rugby, taekeando and off course, football (or soccer ⚽ as it is called at home.) Along with many war cries of “un, dos, tres, leones!” we managed to score plenty of points and end second over all!
Milko, the Lima 2019 mascot, stopped by for some additional fun, and of course to hand out trophies and medals.
Today I realised once more, it doesn’t matter where in the world you are, the smile of a child is the most beautiful thing on earth.