Tuesday, April 28, 2015

paddles up

This Sunday was my first dragonboat race with my second team. My first team is a merely social team that only participates in the big Stanley event but I love them too much to leave the team. I joined the second team because I wanted to be more serious about my paddling skills and boy did I have to be careful what I wished for. My second team is dead serious about wanting to win. I told SB not to come out and support me because I wasn't sure if I would be allowed any time to socialize between the team talks and warm ups. These pictures were taken from the team's Facebook page because I didn't bring along a camera, thinking that I wouldn't be able to watch any other races. As it turned out, there was a bit of time for socialization but mostly we needed to stay near the team tent or people would get nervous. It was quite a difference from my other team, where we never knew if we even had a full team until five minutes before the race, and half of the team was drunk. That being said, my old team performed surprisingly well in spite of, or maybe because of, our laid back attitudes.

Do you like the background? It had been a while since I'd been to Lamma and I had forgotten about the plant right on the water. I had not forgotten the current and hoped that our lane would be closer to the sea wall. The boats on the outside lanes encountered difficulty staying in their lanes. One of the races had to be repeated because four boats crashed. In our first race, we came within a meter of another boat. I don't know who was to blame so I'll blame the other team.

We placed third in the 500m finals and first in the 1000m race. I didn't even know that there was a 1000m race! I'm not sure how I feel about dragging around a cumbersome boat using a somewhat inefficient stroke for 1000 meters. Give me a kayak and we'll talk. Anyway, it was nice to win something. Our trophy had not one but two tiers of angels and no less than four acorns on top. It made for a very auspicious event. I also received a hefty medal to wear and was chastised for not putting it on but I have a stance against wearing albatross like weights around my neck.

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