The Wrestling Room
As I sit here with my eyes closed, I imagine a tropical breeze. The warm wet air slides over my face. The humidity seems almost heavy enough to crush me. As I take a deep breath, the realization that this is no tropical air comes crashing in. Instead of the refreshing scent of the ocean, or tropical plants, the taste of salt from sweat and a smell of the human body fill my lungs. The daydream is over. A shrill whistle sounds and the voice of coach Chuck booms through out the room, breaking the peace that was comforting the pain in my shoulder and bringing me back to reality. I was not on some humid island paradise, but rather in the explosive atmosphere of the Hotchkiss High School wrestling room.
The Hotchkiss High School Wrestling room, though bland through out most of the year, transforms during the winter sports season. By itself, the room is nothing. It could be used for many things, but happens to be the perfect size and shape for a wrestling mat to be laid down with a little room on either side. What makes the room so significant is not the shape, size, color or any other dimension. It is the people; the atmosphere during a wrestling practice that makes the room so infamous.
Wrestling practice is dreaded all day as one drags from one class to the next, checking the clock frequently, though it will inevitably come. After the last bell of the day rings, I know that I could just skip practice, but I cannot let myself slack like that. As much as I do not want to I make the long trek to the locker room, and my mood begins to change.
As I slip out my day's cloths, and step onto the scale I find that I am five pounds over. After some quick math in my head, I figure that I will be down to weight by the morning after next if I watch what I eat closely. Thinking about my next meal, I begin to put on my work-out gear; beginning the transfer into the world of wrestling. When I have my workout gear on, I am no longer Adam the senior from HHS. I am between two worlds. The doorway to the wrestling room is the passage to one of these worlds: the world of wrestling.
From the outside, I can see my teammates preparing for practice. Some sit against the red padded wall, keeping to themselves and looking rather disgusted with what they will be doing shortly. Others look indifferent, quietly talking with those that look civil around them. Then again, some feel it is necessary to have some fun before practice starts. They wrestle around, pick on each other and make a general nuisance of themselves. I often wonder why those that do that can be so careless in the minutes before such an intense practice, but I think they are just trying to ease the tension of yet another killer work out.
From outside the door, I look at the mat. The gray mat is like a motionless tide, daring me to enter its world and I do. As I sit on the rolled mats along the wall and look at the clock. Almost time to get going, only five more minutes to be...