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2006-12-10 - 3:08 a.m.

This is something I never anticipated I would experience!


Go on the Attack
Pev's Paintball
20136 Gant Lane
Leesburg, VA 21075
Ever feel like shooting someone with exploding balls of paint? In a nutshell, paintball is just that sport, one alive and well in Loudoun County.
One of the top paintball retailers in the country, Pev's has a retail store in Sterling as well as a retail store and paintball field Pev's at AG in Leesburg, as well as four others in the Northern Virginia area.
The field in Leesburg is open, from 9 a.m.-4 p.m., on the weekends if weather permits.
Group games involving side against side battles are the norm for paintball. Guns, paint, air tanks, masks, clothing/attire and accessories can be purchased for personal use at retail stores or rented/purchased at the field.
For more information on paintball, check out "

Paintball is apparently very popular now among the middle school kids at Blue Ridge. I heard our neighbor's boys talking of it (on more than one occassion!), and I heard some of my former girl scouts excited about going. So when Katerina and Soren were invited to go, the Uncles and I decided we would all join in the adventure.

It was pretty funny! I think both Katerina and I were in tears in the first 30 seconds of the game as we were both clueless and I got nailed in the neck by some other clueless paintballer who didn't quite catch on yet that it is not nice to attack the newbies who are trying to figure out the rules and what the heck is going on. Its also a violation to hit anyone in the head and you will get kicked out for the day-- so I suspect that was bad aim from another clueless person.

After the initial sting,pain. and shock and reaction "THIS IS FUN???? WE PAID TO GET ABUSE????", and a few literal TEARS that swelled up in me, Katerina and I bounced back and got into the second game. I actually REALLY got into it in my third round as it was REALLY FUN and a sense of accomplishment to have made it across the river.

So what that I had no clue where the heck the flag was that was suppossed to be the intended object of pursuit. So what if I never actually nailed one person in the game with a paintball (OOPS the guys wearing RED Are JUDGES! I now know not to attack them...)
So what if it took me at least two games before I even figured out how the gun worked (Oh yeah.... that safety lock has to be tripped)
It was still a blast strategically figuring out how to run super fast over an unsuspecting route and end up over the river. So what if once there (even at an amazing strategic location) I wasn't really very good at doing much. It was still a blast to REALLY be in the game that round (and I was.) I actually did hold my own, and to be honest did pick off some guy who made it up to a tower. After a few rounds I finally realized just how far those painballs fly.

And while in that cool spot some kid who was really intense joined me and for few moments we were partners in combat. So what if
i actually emptied my gun and gave him my ammo as he was really into it and ran out... (yes that paint is expensive, and the kids we went with could have used it- but for a moment I bonded with my buddy in the what do you call it...not fox hole.. "bunker" that's it- YEs that kid WAS a good shot so I got into the spirit of it)

So what if when playing the final round Soren and I played together and he REALLY WANTED to go into one of those towers so we did despite sage advice not to!

SO what if once there we were sitting ducks!

So what if once there it wasn't much fun, and we were out of our element being riddled with paint, and so what if we SHOULD HAVE SAT OUT THAT FINAL GAME as Soren then was the one in tears as he FELL in the river when we were crossing it, was wet and cold and tired at the end of the day, and was then miserable as we were out of the game but being attacked when trying to get OUT OF THE THICK OF IT climbing down the tower and crossing in the line of fire!

Soren, who had been having fun at the get go (as he got it all much faster than Katerina and I!), got tired and we should have sat out of that game and called it a day. But he REALLY wanted to play a round with me after having some with the middle school friends we went with. So we played together and experienced the bonding of misery together! (But he luckily bounced back once out of the combat zone and dried off!)

Overall it indeed WAS A FUN DAY. Not something I would ever have initiated doing, but when presented we all surprisingly enjoyed it. It isn't the kind of thing I would be itching to do again though!

ONce was enough. I've had enough bruises and the drama and thrill of the ups and downs of life that I don't have to SEEK that kind of drama in recreation!

Scrabble or chess are more my speed.

I also am not generally a proponent of games encouraging violence, even under the guise of sanctioned military exercises pruportedly meant to instill PEACE in our country. To me War is no game. (OK- we did love those RISK tournaments years ago...)

There WERE a lot of real military folk there who played that "game" super seriously. For us it was a fun activity on our least likely to do list that was indeed a blast for a day. But it was also a bit disconcerting just how seriously some of the players took it.

But overall, as my mom friend who invited us to go with her daughter and friends said "The funny thing about kids is that they won't remember the falling in the river, they won't recall the smarting of the paintball. Soren won't recall he felt miserable in this particular moment. Years from now they will tell the story of how much fun they had and how special it was to do that with you."

And that is what is most important!
Whatever it is that we parents do with our kids is valuable when its quality time spent together. Even more important though is that we parents are open to letting our kids bring us into THEIR worlds and that we love and accept THEM and have interest in their experiences and interests- even when they are not our own.

Thus this mom went paintballing, and suprisingly enjoyed it! How could I not though? It was time with my wonderful children!

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