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The Thrill Of Opening Day As "Life" Starts Anew

SAN FRANCISCO - APRIL 09:  Fans walk in the concourse before the San Francisco Giants and the Atlanta Braves Opening Day game at AT&T Park on April 9, 2010 in in San Francisco, California.  (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)
Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images
Dave DalbyContributor IApril 9, 2010

I had to "experience" Opening Day this year via TV some 400 miles away from San Francicso, I mean San Francisco  I was able to attend last year and I will tell you it is always a great experience.  It signifies the renewal of life, anticipation, and above all hope.

Due to a change in my job in 1989 I had to move to Southern California.  Yes, that was the year the Giants made the earthquake Series.  I had moved on the first of October, so missed that whole ordeal.  While I was still able to attend a few games each year, I never went to another Opening Day until last year.

I probably don't have to tell you it is not easy being a Giant Fan in LALA land.  If it is not the ridicule you have to endure it is the meanness that has crept into the rivalry here in the Southland.  I have stopped going to Dodger Stadium due to the rowdyism I have experienced there in the last few years.  Candlestick, I am sure, was no pick-nick for Dodger fans, but Chavez Ravine has turned ugly.

I live amidst a sea of Dodger Blue here n SoCal and seldom wander out in my Black and Orange.  I even have found myself reduced to wearing a pinstripe NY Giants hat knowing that no one around here would recognize it as a Giants hat. Well, that brings me to the point of the article.

Last year my wife and I decided to go for the Opening Day weekend and see the Giants play the brewers.  We landed in Oakland and made our way by BART to the City and to our hotel on Muni.  We then took Muni and the Ballpark express to the Park.  Try getting to Dodger Stadium by public transportation!

What began slowly to impact me was that after all these years, I was home. People proudly wore Giants finery, be it hats, pins, shirts, or what have you. We climbed the ramp to our seats high in Left Field and the excitement was electric.  As we scaled the ramp the people were of one purpose, of one mindset.  We were Giant fans and it was a new year.  The last few years had not been kind to us, but this was a fresh start.

We won that day, and we had a pretty good year that kept us all engaged to the end.  It was good to again be with my people, with my extended family, with the Giant faithful!  While I could not make it for the Opener this year--I will return again this year to be among the cheering crowd.  Go Giants! Have a great year.

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