The home stretch begins

It’s going to be a long home stretch, but it began in earnest on Tuesday with a home game against Merstham.

It was a strange game – we had more chances, but the Moatsiders had much more possession, and whilst nil-nil was probably the right scoreline, overall I felt that we had gained a point rather than lost two.

We had had a roughly two week break whilst Merstham played throughout the holiday, and it was an interesting thing to see as to who that would benefit. Even though we were training during the Christmas break, there’s no substitute for actually playing; whilst playing throughout the holidays can be too tiring. The general question of whether to “rest” or to “play” remains unanswered; all I know is that I needed a break so I was pleased that K’s did not play on Boxing Day.

As it was, both teams defended exceptionally and deserved to not concede a goal; Kingstonian were certainly not at their best or even close to it, but that was just as much Merstham’s fault as ours, so I’d prefer to give them the credit for being the better team in general play overall on the day.

Next up for us is the trip to Bishop’s Stortford, given the fact that my current mood for hating travel has not subsided, even though it’s a ground that have visited on more than one occasion so I should be familiar with it, I can’t see us making the trip. The journeys are probably ok, it’s the worrying about it and anticipating that a journey is going to be bad that stops me travelling before I even start. I’m not sure how that is going to be solved, I used to be able to cope a lot better than I do now, maybe it’s something that comes and goes in waves. I am determined, however, to make it to Knaphill and Tonbridge next week, weather permitting.

I have, at last, managed to see Kingstonian win away, though ironically it was away to Corinthian-Casuals. It was nice not to sit in the press box, the view from the prawn sandwich section felt far more roomy, though in the first half someone did decide to do an impression of the floodlight in front of the press box and tried to block my view quite a lot. For some reason, I said nothing (sometimes you get what you deserve).

I said in a previous blog that this game would be better than the snorefest of August, but this didn’t register highly on the footballing Richter scale either, the bottom line is that we won the game, the collective defensive narcolepsy near the end of the game that allowed the hosts to score what became merely a consolation made the scoreline less comfortable than it actually was. The other interesting thing for me about the day was that I needed to have a peek inside the press box to see what my compatriots did equipment-wise when it came to organising themselves.

It was a light bulb moment. When it comes to organising myself, I’ve been a disaster. My choices when it comes to buying new equipment or using existing stuff were dreadfully poor. As a result, I had wires all over the place; speakers that had three wires, two places to plug into the laptop, a laptop that could barely fit on the shelf within the press box, and even more wires flying left and right. Combine that with the view being rubbish, then it’s no surprise that I haven’t settled.

So Tuesday saw the debut of my new and wireless tablet, and my cheap as chips tiny cuboid Bluetooth speaker. Only one wire, and that’s for the microphone. It felt like it worked a charm. There were some teething problems, and I haven’t completely worked out how to use the tablet, but it felt so much better. Not only was I not covered in wires but I wasn’t lugging around an overfull rucksack. Maybe, just maybe, this is the start of me settling down. There are still things I want to fix, there are still these severe doubts as to my ability to motivate myself (I decide to retire from non-league football at least ten times a day and change my mind roughly two minutes later almost every time, this constant faffing around with how I think is very tiring to say the least), but a start in an attempt to settle down has been made.

So, given that Rosey and I probably won’t make the trip to Bishop’s Stortford, our next game is Knaphill next Tuesday. A new ground always makes things interesting; the desire for a proper tilt at the Surrey Senior Cup is always there, but we’ve had so many cock-ups in cup football that a Knaphill win wouldn’t be a complete surprise – it’s sometimes more of a surprise (indeed it’s normally a relief) when we don’t slip on the banana skin and do what we’re supposed to do. We need to be professional to get the job done. I just hope that it doesn’t rain as hard on the day as it did the first time we tried to play.

I also just hope that I can get rid of this effing stress that I am piling upon myself before every single game, home or away, these days, it’s gotta go before I do…

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