The great orchestration of life
The band members marched in the mist.
Did the Monday morning travelers notice the 100 or so students who practiced their marching drills under clouds that more than hinted at rain, I wondered, as I turned south on Main Street, heading toward downtown.
The director of the band stood on a ladder at the west edge of the field, surely as soggy as his troops as he orchestrated his musical traffic of sorts. But Monday there was no music, for the instruments with their felt pads do not always fare so well in the rain.
But the students persevered.
I admire the tenacity of the students and of their instructor.
Likewise in August, when the football team and other fall teams practiced under blazing sun, forfeiting all hope of comfort in the 110-degree real-life sauna, the determination of coaches and students showed strong.
What is the drive within human nature that compels people to struggle onward despite adversity?
What is it that makes people want to be better, to do a finer job at what they're doing, to strive to take first place, to win the game, to bring home the trophy?
The true spirit of a winner is that there's always another mountain to climb another hurdle to jump another bridge to cross.
And the winner, no matter how many losses, how many failures, how many rejections, is willing to try again.
We've all had our failures moments that we wished could have been different events or life situations at which we would liked to have succeeded.
But success, like its counterpart, good luck, can be elusive, at least when it comes to seeing it outright, or to recognizing it at the time. And relative.
Success means not giving up, even when you might want to. Success means playing your hardest even when you know you probably won't win the game. Success means trying sometimes again and again and again.
And so, when the students march in the rain, or run in 110-degree heat, they're practicing lessons that will last as long as they live.
Next time you see teen-agers marching in the mist, give them a cheer. They're learning about more than just marching in formation.
They're learning about life.