This was Deb Rouin’s vacation week, and she had tickets to the Red Sox game.
The Beverly resident, who works in marketing, attends only a handful of games each year. So when umpires halted play because of rain at 2:58 p.m. — in the bottom of the fifth inning in Game 1 of Boston’s doubleheader with Tampa Bay on Tuesday — she begged her husband to stay.
“Oh, I begged,” Rouin said.
Her husband, Mike, rolled his eyes. “I had no choice.”
Three hours, two ponchos, and a $100 concession bill later, there they were: The Rouins, still standing in the Fenway Park concourse.
“And aren’t you glad we stayed?” Deb Rouin said, grinning and nudging her husband.
They weren’t the majority.
A 2-hour-and-59-minute rain delay interrupted Tuesday’s early game, already a makeup from an April 12 rainout.
It is unclear how many fans weathered the mid-afternoon showers, but when play resumed at 5:57, the stands were less than 20 percent full. Ushers blocked off the bleachers entirely.
There was an announced attendance of 33,430 before the delay.
Few updates were provided to fans throughout the ordeal as forecasts remained dubious.
“But throughout it all, I don’t think we really considered leaving,” said Reading resident Meaghan Kinton, who attended the game with Owen Lannun, whom she was babysitting.
This was Lannun’s first major league game. He originally had tickets for April 12. Lannun said he enjoyed the experience, and wanted to stay until his favorite player, Dustin Pedroia, recorded a hit.
“But I didn’t know that baseball games were this long,” said the 11-year-old, playing hooky from fifth grade.
Kinton said caregivers are used to the question, “Are we there yet?” — usually reserved for long car rides.
Lannun asked a variation of that question: “Is it canceled yet?”
“About 400 times,” Kinton said.
And she had no answer.
Most fans spent their time milling the concourses. Beer sales stopped, per stadium policy, two and a half hours after the first pitch.
Because it was pouring outside, most fans didn’t want to venture outside. One of the only things to do inside is shop.
Takumi Yamamoto was manning the Boston Public Library’s gallery, a folding table in the concourse which features prints of historic Fenway moments for sale. Yamamoto said during a normal game, he sells $300 to $400 of merchandise.
In the first 45 minutes of his shift — which started at 4:30 p.m. — he sold 200 dollars’ worth.
“And the girl who was working before me said she sold 750 dollars,” Yamamoto said. “I’ve never seen anything like this.”
The Red Sox allowed any fan who stayed for Game 1 to attend the second game if they wanted. Fans who had tickets to Game 2 and wanted to catch the end of the opener were allowed to.
However, everyone in the stadium needed to exit after the first game to receive new tickets.
The scene in the concourses after Game 1 featured a maze of wandering fans, confused phone calls, and endless questions to ushers.
“I didn’t even realize we were able to stay if we wanted to,” said Deb Rouin, again smiling at her husband.
She would have to do some more begging.Emily Kaplan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org