Try as I might, I do not understand the rules of cricket. It seems a bit like American baseball: bats are used to hit balls, players run between marked points, and opponents in the field attempt to catch the flying ball before it touches the ground. Beyond, this, however, the game remains a mystery to me. Nevertheless, I do love the traditions of cricket. Players dressed in stylish "cricket whites," spectators alongside the pitch clapping politely and sipping tea, and the unceasing expectation of the players' gentlemanliness—whether their team is composed of gentlemen or workingmen. (And today, women play the game, too.)
The game was first played in England in the mid 1500's. As the British Empire spread, they took cricket with them. The game remains enormously popular today, especially in the former English colonies of South Asia, Southern Arica and the West Indies.
The American-born oil tycoon, J. Paul Getty purchased a 2,700 acre estate at Wormsley, located between London and Oxford, England. An avid cricket fan, Getty had a cricket pitch built on his property. It is nestled in an amphitheater-like depression on the estate and thus enjoys a mild and pleasant microclimate. The surrounding hills and forrest also provide a beautiful setting for the gentlemanly game. A Mock-Tudor cricket pavilion—complete with clock and thatched roof—sits at one end of the premises. Tent-like structures provide shade and refreshment for observers. It is widely considered England's finest cricket grounds.
More from my travels tomorrow.
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