Saturday, 8 December 2012

Friday Night Games

I recently got a job as a labourer on a farm, picking, sorting, and bunching Calla Lilies. They're pretty yellow flowers native to Southern Africa, but picking them for hours in the sun is hard work, and quite tiring.

Yesterday I was on the farm for nearly nine hours. I got up at six in the morning to be there by seven, and I was finished at three thirty in the afternoon.

My back was wrecked from bending down to pick the flowers over and over, as it is every day I work, and I was quite tired having only slept about four hours the previous night, and I was leading worship at my youth group that night.

When I finished work, I went straight from the farm to the church and had a shower there, because I was covered in mud from the farm. We had a sound check in the afternoon, and I only had a moment to rest before we had to start singing.

Now, you've got to understand that last night was our final youth group for the year, so things were going to get crazy! We were all dressed up as superheroes of villains, (I was dressed as Marvel's Hawkeye) and for worship, we decided to not have any slow songs, but just do five up-beat party songs. Which at our youth group, basically means jumping up and down, running around, moshing in front of the stage, and going crazy for about twenty minutes.

The sound check was alright, but I knew that tonight, worship was going to be hard work, so I decided to pick an easy job for the carnival we were having before the real show began.

All the leaders had a job they had to do that was involved in a carnival game of some sort. The kids would play the games and win raffle tickets. The more tickets the kids had, the more chances they had of winning the grand prize.

So because I'd already had a very long day, I chose to do something I thought would be easy.

I chose to be the clown in the clown toss game.

Basically, I sit there moving my head from side to side while kids try to throw marshmallows in my mouth. Nice and easy. But as more and more kids started arriving, and more and more kids started to succeed in throwing marshmallows into my mouth; I realised something:

Eating about thirty marshmallows in one sitting is not healthy. And washing it down with Creaming Soda is just stupid.

I felt very sick, very quickly. I had so many marshmallows I nearly got to the point where if a kid threw one in my mouth, I would just spit it out again.

But eventually the game ended, and I walked away groaning and holding my stomach.

It gets better though. During the meeting the leaders had when we got our jobs and learrnt about everything that was happening that night; our leader sprung something on us that none of us knew about.

Dash for Cash.

Well, what a surprise that was for all of us. I dreaded the thought of being hunted down by enraged kids, foaming at the mouth, trying to rip duct-taped cash off my chest as I scream for mercy.

I'd only played the game once before, and it was terrifying. The story of me just barely surviving the game is still one of the most popular diary entries on my blog.

So when the carnival was done, and my body was recovering from a metric tonne of marshmallows and Creaming Soda, the kids filed into the auditorium and sat down in their seats to watch a little video clip.

While the clip was running, the leaders slowly disappeared into the foyer where we were strapped up with our envelopes and scattered outside.

I'm not going to describe everything that happened during the game in this entry because it's a long story, but you can read all about it here.

To make a long story short, I spent about five minutes just sprinting around the church. I basically did a lap of the entire property, which is quite big I should mention.

I came back inside after the game with my legs weak, sweating like a dog, and just barely alive.

We had some jokes, and some awards were given out, and we watched some video clips, but the worship was really where it was at.

To do that many songs jumping around and singing one after the other was perfectly exhausting. By the time we were done; I had sweated out all the fluid left in my body, and reduced my muscles to jelly. But man it was awesome!

I just feel sorry for our poor drummer, who had a full-body Spiderman outfit on. At least my Hawkeye costume involved a singlet. The poor guy lost feeling in his hands after a few songs.

Once worship was done, there was a dance party outside. It was a really great party and the DJ was great, but I wasn't about to start dancing on top of all that I had done already.

What a day it had been. Outside we had an all-you-can-eat dessert buffet and soft drinks, and I hadn't eaten anything in about ten hours, unless you include the marshmallows.

So while everyone danced away, I sat there and relaxed for the first time since six that morning, eating enough cake and chocolate to kill a small animal.

It was a really great night. I was basically brain dead, completely stuffed, and I had a very full week ahead of me, but it was worth every bit.

What a great way to finish off the year. I love our youth group and all the stupid things we do.

I didn't even mention the giant inflatable balls people were rolled around in, the jumping castle, our worship band with two drum kits, a keytar, and six singers, the balloon fiasco, or any of the amazing costumes I saw, but this diary entry is long enough already.

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