Jack sat in the old wooden stadium chair, in the sun, enjoying the 2 matches being played below on the Bocci courts. The weather on this island of Malta, in February, was unpredictable. The Mediterranean sun could be blistering in the summer, but this day in February was ideal for Bocci. 65 degrees, and with the surf pounding on the rocks below, and a cold Diet Coke in hand – it was perfect.
Jack began nodding off as he sat there – absorbing the sun – he had closed his eyes. Then he heard a voice: “hey! Come play – we need 1 more!”. The Maltese man was speaking to Jack – pointing at him – and insisting that he come down to the court to play bocci with them. They needed one more player to complete the team. “I don’t really know how to play”, said Jack. “No problem, bocci is 80% luck and 20% skill – come on – it’ll be fun!”. Jill said 'GO - do it!'
So, for the next 2 hours Jack played bocci, in Malta, at the Bugibba Bocci Club – with a bunch of retired Maltese men, without a care in the world. They joked with him, his Americanisms, his form, his lack of bocci knowledge. They explained the differences between Malta bocci and bocci played in the rest of the world.