Here we are — regular ol' fighting Irish!
We woke up Saturday morning to the sound of voices outside our apartment. Tailgate parties start early in South Bend! Two of the houses behind us have grass lots that had already filled up with cars and people wearing green. Two other young couples in the accounting program joined us at our apartment so we could walk over to the stadium. The entire walk was lined with people and tents, food and more food. We enjoyed lunch, put on by Ryan's program, and then we lined the street and watched the marching band go into the stadium (led by a priest, interestingly enough).
The game was PACKED! I mean PACKED with sweaty, enthusiastic, Irish fans! I was shocked to find that the benches were just little, five-inch pieces of wood that put splinters in your shorts and did not seem sturdy enough to support that many jumping fans! Everyone stood on the benches for the ENTIRE game. This was not like BYU where people sit down for TV time-outs, etc. No, no, they stand the entire time. And no one's chit-chatting with their neighbor either (which I admit I missed); it's all about the game!
Unfortunately the team's playing wasn't too much to talk about, considering the score...But the atmosphere was new and exciting to both of us! It was weird not knowing all the little cheers in the student section and even weirder not knowing the fight song! We did, though, sing some "Rise and Shout" while we watched the BYU football game on TV after our game ended. Go BYU!
We look forward to many more afternoons standing on those little benches in next few months!