Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Hostile Paintball - Team-building

It's 'Women's Day' here in South Africa and a Public Holiday.  I've not done anything very feminine to observe this holiday - au contraire - I've been with my husband and 40 of his staff to a morning of Hostile Paintball (i.e. for grown-ups).  I took my knitting though as I was a spectator. What fun!  Nearly all of his mechanics and apprentices and some of the older guys turned up, got kitted out with their 'guns and ammo', were divided into four teams, so that they had two games each and off they went to entertain us with the echoes of guffaws, curses and 'gun shots' as they pelted each other with paint in a wilderness of trees, gullies and bushes.  There was much good-natured teasing and a great deal of cheating by the time they had finished, but the feeling of general well-being, exhaustion and being covered in mud and paint appeared to constitute a very satisfying morning.  (Rather similar to when I used to take my grandson to an hour of Messy Play at Moms & Tots).  Actually, I would have loved to join in -were it not for a dodgy hip, sore knee etc. like most of the over-sixties on the sidelines. The morning ended off with a great sausage braai ( 'Bar B Q') and cool drinks and we still had the afternoon to do other things. Good stuff. Nice when you can shoot your boss/employee in public instead of cursing him at the workplace.  A relief of tensions all round. Not so the small group of afficionados who followed us, complete with fabulous expensive personal gear, serious faces, camouflage outfits and who moved with quiet stealth. It makes me shiver to think that anyone could take this game to such lengths. I guess there are always those that dream of being a soldier, despite the horrors of war.  


  1. It sounds like a great day! -- and a perfect way to ease tension between office mates! I didn't know about Women's Day in South Africa -- what a terrific idea for a public holiday. You know, I think only those who haven't been exposed to war would want to play war. My brother is a Vietnam veteran and for years he would have flashbacks and get physically ill. That doesn't happen anymore, but he says there are things that he will never forget.

  2. Like the holocaust survivors. I've just read Anne Michaels "Fugitive Pieces" - deeply moving. May we never forget the terrible effects of any war.

  3. Because the Himalayas, home of the snow, is the most impressive system of mountains on the earth, and for centuries the setting for epic feats of exploration and mountain climbing / treks, are a world into themselves.