Sunday, July 14, 2013

Chapter 3. (July 11) And the games begin

It’s raining again this morning, making it hard to get up and out of the house, but up and out I go.  I get to the competition site and immediately have to get geared up.  This is the Men’s High Performance Open preliminaries, and my heat includes the current Men’s World Champion and at least one other really good boater.  I’m hopelessly outclassed, but I’m only competing in the Open division because I can.

The top scorer will advance to round 3, while the remaining three of us (because there is no way I’m going to win this heat, short of a mass shark attack taking out all my competition) will go on to round 2.

So into the water I go, still feeling a bit shaky.  Today’s goal:  no swims.  I catch some waves, I don’t swim, and it pretty much all goes by in a blur.  I don’t even remember how many waves I caught.  Sigh. 

One bit of interesting observation from teammate Devon:  “Hey Carlisle, I can fix your roll.  It’s really simple, just a few minor technical things."  We agree to meet back at Twin Waters where she’ll give me the fix.

I spend the rest of the day watching my teammates compete, and then head to Twin Waters.  Devon takes Kate (who also needs work) and me out to the lagoon, and Mat shoots some video, and Devon proceeds to perform a miracle.  OK, not a miracle.  She simply gives me a few pointers, has me try the requisite motions, and on my first try I nail an effortless roll.  A few minor corrections to polish things up from Devon, and on my second try I’m upright so forcefully that I almost continue back over—only a quick brace saves me.  Problem solved!

I have dinner with Rachael and Jim, and head home and fall asleep exhausted.  I’m in heat 3 for round 2, so I’m still on for early morning.

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