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When the smell of Jasmine is a long way off

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We passed through the Winter solstice last week, but as usual, no one really cared. The shortest day of the year came and went and we all busied ourselves by adding an extra layer or two to our daily clobber to avoid the harsh chill that accompanies this time of year. This is a tough little patch for league footballers too. July is nearly upon us. Out Footscray way, we often referred to “the July test”, the month where the true believers dig deep to forge ahead and leave the pretenders behind. July is cold, but it’s not just that. The start of the season is long gone and the smell of finals Jasmine is still a long way off too. The solstice, for those in footy, is the marker of time to tell you, you’re in the middle nowhere. This is, what some people in football might refer to as, the grind. It’s funny what you miss.

Wood's big day: Easton Wood desperately hangs onto Jordan De Goey.Credit:AAP

Sunday was a rare kind of football outing for my family and I. The Bulldogs were playing the Magpies at Marvel Stadium and the match being the skipper, Easton Wood's 150th game, we wanted to be there for him. I wouldn’t describe my kids as football fanatics, far from it actually, but they put on their Bulldogs jumpers and scarfes with a level of enthusiasm that suggested the dress up part of the day was probably more........

© The Age