Wednesday, May 21, 2008

The Last Goodbye

If you’ve been reading this blog since it started about 18 months ago, you know that I’m a huge Yankee fan. One of my dreams as a child was to be able to bring my OWN children to the Stadium, just like my parents did back in the 70’s. If you ask me where is my favorite place on earth to go, I would say “Yankee Stadium”. So, when I heard recently that they were building a new Yankee Stadium, it broke my heart. The old stadium is going to be destroyed, put down, killed, exterminated--- what ever horrible word you want to use. All I know is it’s going to be gone. So, last night was my last night at the “house that Ruth built”.

Michael, my roommate Michelle and I went to the 7pm game vs Baltimore. It rained ALL day. So the whole way into the city we didn’t know if the game was going to be rained out. But, we were willing to take that chance. It takes us about an hour and 15 min. without traffic to get to the Stadium.

I decided to take the Triboro Bridge (there are like 4 different ways to go) and didn’t know the exit off the Long Island Expressway (LIE). I yelled to the back of the car “Hey Michael- what exit do we take for the Triboro?”. Michael thinks for a second and says “24a” (or whatever the number is). He was absolutely correct (as usual).

By the time we got to our seats, the rain had stopped. We even started to see blue sky. Plus, we were lucky enough to be in a section that was covered- so no wet seats! Things were looking up.

The first inning Baltimore scored 6 runs. LOL.

I didn’t care THAT much if the Yanks won the game, because I was there to say goodbye to the Stadium. But 6 runs? Come on. Also, Derek Jeter got hit with a pitch and left the game. We left around the 8th inning. I took a final walk around the stadium to say goodbye. Michael didn’t want to hold my hand. He’s getting so independent.

I’m surprised he lasted that long. It was about 10pm. At one point Michael took the beach towel I brought to wipe off the seats and put over his head. He just didn’t seem to enjoy this game as much as the other two. But, I think part of that was where we were located. You couldn’t see the field that well. In the past we were high up and could see everything. It was also cold as heck. Probably around 40-45*F. I could see my breath! I could honestly say I’ve never seen my breath at Yankee Stadium. We must have broken a record because it seems like the coldest May night ever!

The highlight of the night for me was when Kevin Millar on the other team hit a homerun in our section. We all started yelling “Throw it back!” to the poor guy who caught the ball. After making a decision between keeping the baseball or living, the guy threw the ball back onto the field. My roommate, who is from Buffalo, was confused, “Why would you throw the ball back?”. I said “because it’s the right thing to do”.

That’s just one of the great traditions of Yankee Stadium. It’s like no other place on earth. I’m so happy that Michael and I could say “goodbye”, literally. When we were leaving Michael turned around and said “Goodbye Yankee Stadium”. I know he understands that there is a new park next store and this one will be gone, but he doesn’t understand the history of this place like I do. I’m just happy that I was able to take Michael to three games. It was something that I thought would never happen after the “autism kicked in”.

So, we’ll be grateful for what we have and look forward to new memories at the new Stadium.

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