By Nash Wills, Staff Writer
Last Friday the Latin American Business and Culture Club and the Thunderbird Football Club teamed up to host what was probably the most successful event, besides regional night, so far this semester. I recount the day’s events below:
Fridays are supposed to be easy here at Camp Thunderbird, at least that’s what we tell ourselves. No classes and an early start to the weekend. Alas, it’s internship search season, though, and I’m no exception to the times. I’m already up and on the 17 towards Glendale by 9 for a 10:30 meeting with Angelique. I borrowed Lauren’s car on the condition that I would be back to pick her up for Fútbol y Tacos by 2. Last week had been hell. I’d been sick and had made some promises to myself about the job search that a sinus infection wasn’t going to break. The meeting went well. Angelique hooked me up with some solid connections and an unusual feeling returned to my bones: hope. I went back to my room to revel in it and send out a couple of quick emails. Email number 1 turns into email number 2 and tasks start building up. My relaxing Friday has all but disappeared. 3 o’clock can’t come quick enough—but wait, its already 2:30. I’m late picking up Lauren. Sorry Lauren.
I had been feeling better by the time Friday rolled around—at least good enough to drink some beer, make conversation, inhale a few tacos, and kick the soccer ball around. Also, I had some skin in the game: due to Tomás not being able to make the first mandatory club meeting, I received a political appointment: the vice presidency of the soccer club–a résumé builder. By the time I showed up at the Fish, the festivities had already started. Tomás had gone to a local carnicería and spent some of the soccer club funds on everything needed for a successful carne asada. Flank steak, corn tortillas, onions–the kind with the root still attached–cheese, and a lone bag of chips. The grill was fired up and the atmosphere was happening. A lot of people were already there; people who I normally don’t see at on-campus events. A welcome change. First thing I do is grab a libation and make a run for the grill. The line is long but Tomás hooks me up with a fresh taco—vice presidential privileges. The day is perfect. Arizona weather during this time of year can’t be beat. Add that together with a pool, some palm trees, green grass, cool people, and some music and you have yourself a regular fiesta.
Soccer games start around 5ish. I’m on team Mexico. It’s me, Tomás, Jason, and Alex. The iron-framed soccer goals are in the shed by the rugby field and we’ve got to go get them. I start making my way over yonder when I look up to see David Roman coming my direction with both goals in hand. I’m stunned by this feat of strength but then realize that it’s David Roman…for him, this is everyday stuff. We watch a couple of games before ours starts. The Latin America Business and Culture Club is in charge of keeping the time on the games and a lot of people are sitting along the backside of the field watching. Ana calls time. We’re up, and wouldn’t you know it, we’re playing Paraguay in the first round. Not a good thing when all the Middle Easterners are on Paraguay—they’re the best players, and sober. The whistle blows and the ball comes straight to me. Team Paraguay isn’t ready for the start. I kick the ball right away and score. I get a couple of cheers but know it was luck. Tomás scores another quick one but again, luck. Pretty soon the booze and tacos start catching up to us, and so does team Paraguay. When the whistle blows Paraguay has won 3-2. A first round knockout. That’s ok though, I didn’t even want to play a second game anyways…
The games go on and Paraguay ends up winning it all. Evening turns to night and the party is still going. Travis sets up a slack-line that he bought with Honor Council funds between two palm trees. Pretty soon, everyone is trying it and we all find out that slack-lines actually do build teams. It’s hilarious. No one can even make it halfway across without falling. People start fading out and heading for home but I stay and so does a solid group of friends. We relax, tell stories, drink, laugh, fire up the grill and cook more tacos, reminisce and everything that seemed so important earlier that day fades into background noise. This is what its all about…good times with good people. I lean against the slack line and let the cool breeze of the Sonoran pass right through me. But alas, like all good things, this little fiesta at the Fish too must come to an end. And so it does, but naturally…nothing forced. We all agree that we need to do something like this again. Life’s too short, campus is too pretty, the people at school are too cool, and carne asada is just too good.
Special thanks to Stefani Chaney (MAGAM ’17, Venezuela) and Tomas Thomas (MAGAM ’17, Mexico) who organized the event and to the other volunteers who helped out setting up and cooking.