This was my first opening day at Wrigley Field. I hope it will be my last. I went to the game with Lee Kay, his wife Joyce, and Jim Matheson on tickets Lee got from a beer vendor friend of his. We parked about six blocks from Wrigley Field and walked through the cold rain looking for a place to eat. We passed a string of crowded, slimy-looking bars. Lee poked his head into a Mexican restaurant and motioned us in. The place was clean and almost empty — and the food was excellent
About 45 minutes before game time, we headed to the park and found our seats. And delightful seats they were — way down the right-field line, half the infield blocked by a pillar, and surrounded by the sort of people who get free tickets from beer vendors. We were unprotected from a wind that swept across the field and blew cold mist into our faces. Our seats were coated with water that we wiped off as best we could with an old blanket Lee brought.
I packed myself in between Jim and Lee, covered myself with part of Lee’s blanket and wondered why I was there. It was miserable. I was freezing, soaked and packed in too tightly to move. About the time the game started, the beer vendor himself showed up and began tossing around boxes of Cracker Jacks and bags of peanuts. After getting hit on the head a couple times, I decided to load my pockets and bring them home for Beth.
The rain continued for the first couple innings, and we were thinking seriously of leaving. It finally let up, and we decided to tough it out. I let Jim keep score, then borrowed his scorecard and filled mine out at home. The Cubs lost 4-1. (My joints were still stiff the next day.)