I have now had the opportunity to compete in 2 regattas, and while my first was characterized by shivering and snowfall, this one was marked by clear skies, warm weather, and sunburns. We drove to Lake Mercer in West Windsor New Jersey on Friday morning, after loading up the bus. I didn’t do too much other than stare out the window during the ride, although I did happen to bring Picnic for Twelve and I reread the part about the forebears of Frank and Mary (personally, I think the name Cornelius would have suited me well).

We got there and it was bright and sunny. The whole area where the trailers were parked were open and grassy. There was a beach volleyball court a short walk away, although the coaches discouraged using it and told the rowers who started playing to “stay off your feet!” I applied what I thought was a copious amount of sunscreen to no avail, and ended up with an unusually shaped sunburn on my left arm and shoulder.

The race I was in, the Novice 8, started at precisely 10am. I haven’t yet gotten used to the way they make the starting calls, as it feels so much more sudden than cross country races, which have the very ostentatious firing of the pistol. I sat 4 seat as in my race in March. It was a new experience for me, rowing in the middle of the day, especially since the dary blues and grays of the sky and water to which I was accostomed in practice was now much brighter. There was also a great amount of green; in the trees, and in the grass along the side. It looked like a great place to go for a run, with a (and I’m estimating here) 4 mile loop around the lake.

We ended up being not too far off the first 2 boats, while the fourth boat (Iona) was far behind. So we ended up in 3rd place and we each received medals. Everyone on our team who competed ended up with a medal for something, and because our team is so small (19 rowers, 4 coxswains) most guys raced multiple times.

Next up is the famed Dad Vail regatta in Philadelphia, which will happen after we’re all done with classes and finals, on May 11th.


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