|~31 miles later...|
Back to MIT and starting my senior year. There is no greater feeling than to have been in Europe for a month, far removed from the stress and toilful life of being an MIT student. However, I am very glad to see everyone once again and a vacation was just what I needed to come back more focused.
In other news...OBSERVER NOTES ARE UP!! YAY!! Again the website is http://www.sealeopardcharter.com/2011/09/qing-li.html.
Some additional comments to supplement the observer notes (match my comments time noted by KO):
1. 19:03 Hesitation and reluctance in getting in water...I think, Anna Kokensparger would agree as well, that the worst part of any swim is first getting into cold water. Surprisingly, probably due to the nappy cream and vaseline, the water was not as frigid as I had originally expected. Also, in the grand scheme of things, what is 15 minute meandering to a 17-hour swim?
2. 19:35 I made the dumb decision to wear a silicon cap. Unfortunately, my only latex cap a black MIT cap, which is difficult to spot through waves. Even though I stopped conditioning my hair the week leading up the swim, the cap still kept sliding around. Good thing was that the cap stayed on relatively well until the last 2 hours or so.
3. 20:45 For the record, I don't think I realized what sound the Klaxon made until much later in the swim. Since I was only concentrated on swimming, I apparently blocked out sounds from my mind.
4. 00:25 Seaweed gave me quite a scare the first couple of times I swam into them. While the seaweed in Boston is much slipperier, the ones I hit in the Channel were stringy. I couldn't help myself from thinking of the times when Anna would say "eww it's hair!!"
5. 04:15 Happy and positive? Well, questionable. I tried not to let my doubts surface.
6. 05:55 The conditions were probably the worst that I had encountered the whole swim. With the strong winds and current, I was swept quite a distance down the Channel (see chart).
7. 11:25 I was rather confused as to why the dingy wasn't going in with me. And...I wasn't too happy about swimming back to the boat after landing.
8. 11:50 I knew my pace was extremely slow. I didn't realized how slow it actually was until seeing the observer notes. The last 150 yard took ~10 mins? What?
9. Observer' note at end
(a) Keith gives me way too much credit. My preparation was full and complete only because I had amazing mentors through out this whole journey. As I had posted previously, I would not have been able to do this without the support of so many people, Stuart, Stuart, and Keith included!
(b) Point of information, I didn't have a printer at the hotel and had to hand copied my instruction/gear list 3 times. Let's just say it definitely did not help my wrist injury.
(c) The cold afterwards was the worst feeling I had ever felt. I had mentioned in a previous post, when Mackenzie and Emma visited Boston, that trying to get warm was like microwaving a piece of frozen meat. Well, this felt like I was never going to warm up. Far from not being able to feel my fingertips and toes, my arms and legs were completely useless. My mom had to help me put on clothes and take off my suit. Because of the combination of feeling cold, relief, happiness, and gratitude, I started crying again. I know, lame right?
Anyways, it has been a year, one month, and twenty days since my first post and this will probably be my last post. I really hope you have enjoyed reading my adventures, learned something, and have been motivated to seize your own dreams. I had amazing fun. Again, thank you so much for the support!