Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The Swamp

We drove to Gainesville last weekend to attend our first University of Florida football game at The Swamp. We skipped the tailgate party scene and took a bus to the game.

It was Saturday, the Sabbath, but there were a few things I didn't expect to find at the game.

This fellow, I'm told, brings his banner to all the games.

And, oh man! I love that tune I was hearing. Had it been that long since I'd been on a college campus? Here in the middle of upstate Florida we came across our first Hare Krishna singers in a long, long time.

As I remember, they used to be younger.

I thought we were going to a football game, not a religious convention. But then I should have figured it out. It was the first game of the year, a warmup game, and national champion Florida was playing Charleston Southern, a small Christian school from South Carolina.

Ah, here's one thing I expected to see: a lot of young people wearing blue and orange.

We got great end zone seats, right next to the Charleston Southern band and cheer squad. They seemed a bit uncomfortable in The Swamp. CSU is a school of about 3,500 students my neighboring bandsman informed me. The University of Florida has about 50,000 students. The Swamp was filling up with Florida fanatics.

90,000 people assembled in The Swamp to watch the University of Florida Gators play a brave Charleston Southern team who actually beat the 63 point spread that Las Vegas gave them.
The Gator Chomp illustrated on the big screen at our end of the field.

Continued in next posting ...

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