Cold crispy night, sitting as close to the stove as I can, trying to warm my tropical bum up.
We got to the dorm, and a young man of African decent came up and held his arm up, not the usual handshake I was used to. He smiled and promptly said,
“What’s up dawg?” I stopped for a second, did I imagine it or did this fool just call me a dog? Believe me, there was no brotherly love for him at that moment. He was short, no more th…an five foot seven, and I wondered how this little man could be a ball player. He was a little confused when I did not shake his hand, but hey, this fella just called me a bloody dog. Anyway, I was guided into my dorm room and I swear that room was made for little people. It was so damn small I could stretch my arms out and touch the bloody walls. There was a bunk bed on one side, and with one glance I knew I would be sleeping with my feet hanging off the end, maybe five, or so inches.
The next day I woke up around five o clock, normal for me, and looked outside. The sun was bright, and the sunshine was almost like home. I thought, good weather for a run. So I went back to my room, put on shorts and a t-shirt, hell, I was going to enjoy a nice before breakfast. I stepped outside and immediately my skin felt like god and the devil was having a tug of war match. Then, a sensation like needles pricking me ran through my body. I turned and walked like a mummy back to the room and stood in front of the heater thawing out my frozen tropical joints. Being that cold was not natural, someone had to piss off God for him to create this kind of torture, to tell you the truth, twenty years later, and I am still defrosting from that first morning.
That night, I got calls from women who were on Christmas break. I was surprised, but the other ballplayer explained that basketball was king here and people virtually worshipped the players. I told the women not to call again, you may ask why? Well I did not know who they were, and was not about to let my guard down. Later I wanted to kick myself because some of the women were quite beautiful.