I made my first visit to the Bay area a couple weekends ago (the home series vs. the Angels). I was doing a couple things -- checking out a college, checking out the stadium, checking out the area. All with a view towards whether I would want to live out there, because I've been in Missouri all my life and I'm ready for a change. And if I'm going to move away from Busch Stadium? It's going to have to be near another team I can get behind. I've been an A's fan over a year, but still I wanted to check out the stadium, the fans, the atmosphere. Just to be sure.
I got to the stadium on Friday the 22nd and was amazed at the energy. The crowd was loud and proud and really into it. (I'd been told not to expect too much)
I talked with the people around me & was struck by how at home I felt. Usually at a baseball game, nothing can draw my attention away from the field itself and the players. But in Oakland, I just kept looking around at the stadium, the fans, everything. I was in love with it all.
And then at the end of the game, I found out we got to actually GO DOWN ON THE FIELD to watch the fireworks? And I flipped. Pretty much sealed the deal right there; I tumbled head over heels.
The rest of the weekend did not disappoint. I had my first ballpark hot dog ever because the Coliseum sells veggie dogs. (I took that as a sign). I loved getting stopped by strangers on the subway who saw my A's attire, and being asked "Did we win today?"
On Sunday I saw the woman I'd sat beside on Friday, and she said "Welcome back!" And I started crying then and there, because I knew I had to leave that day (had to leave the ballgame early, of all cruel things) and I missed it already.
I see BART schedules in my sleep now, and I daydream about Oakland. And I am totally becoming a resident by Opening Day 2007.