Game time nears. Tickets in hand, we step out of the car and into the parking garage. The level echoes with the noise of traffic on the streets below. Conversations bounce off the walls. The unexpected rubbery scent of a lined stairwell hits my nose as we descend floors, footsteps and cane taps muffled on the surface. We push the glass doors open and emerge onto the sidewalk, moving parallel to the heavy traffic, moving faster than the stadium bound traffic.
It’s cool out here, but I layered up. Leggings under my jeans, a scarf, a long coat. The forecasted rain and wind won’t stop me from enjoying the night game. I’m a Buffalo Bills fan, remember? I find the weather tonight pleasant. Stockton holds my hand as we make our way along the city streets towards the stadium.
Many things hint we’re getting closer. A restaurant with outdoor tables packs in a crowd that spills onto the sidewalk, patrons in team colors holler to each other. It’s a joyful crowd. A man asks us if we need tickets as we head down the next block. A few vendors hawk t-shirts and ponchos. Fans squeeze in next to us at the intersection.
Random team cheers carry through the air from the people ahead of us. Some of those around us walk unsteady, perhaps one too many drinks already. Bright orange pillared lights along the path lead us to the baseball stadium entrances. The chatter of overlapping conversation mixes with the electricity of anticipation. There’s a buzz in the air.
“Enjoy the game.” An attendant scans our tickets and waves us in. I pass through the metal gate and immediately smell savory meats and salty snacks. Someone hands us promotional orange towels. The soft fabric brushes me skin as I nudge through the crowd. Speakers blasting dance music drown out the chatter. Everything around me, the noise, the crowd, the smells, the energy builds to capacity, letting me know we arrived well before the announcer welcomes everyone to Camden Yards. It’s time to play ball.
Did you attend a baseball game or another outdoor event this year? Tell me about it.