It was a good ten days. We won twice on the handball court in our local tournament and twice at the bridge tables in the local duplicate bridge club. One of the handball wins was a 21-20, 20-21, 11-6 epic. As we get older, we appreciate the difference between handball and bridge yet we still love the commonality of competition. Winning never gets old even if we do.
The difference is that we are probably a better bridge player than ever. Even though we may have lost a few synapses, our experience and the fact that time is not a real limiting factor makes us a better bridge player than we were ten years ago. In the handball court we need to recognize that there are some balls that we are not going to chase down. Conserving energy and playing smart makes up for some of the physical deficiencies that time has added but the younger version is going to win the time travel match in handball.
Winning is great fun but competing is the thing. It is satisfying to pull out some wins but having the chance to hit that shot at 20-20 or choose the right bid when your bridge hand doesn’t quite fit the textbook is the great joy. The challenge makes victory sweeter but losses are not as bitter to the players. Coaches are another matter.