Henley '08 – Instalment I

Henley '08 – Instalment I

Yes, I have been very bad at updating this, I’m sorry.

So here’s the run down…

We flew out on Wed afternoon. Nanna, Pa, Auntie Jo and Angus took me to the airport to see me off (which was really nice). After stopping over in Bangkok and getting a Thai massage (Corbs had a guy massaging him and it was rather amusing) we arrived safely in London on Thursday morning GMT.

After waiting another 2 hours because Zoe’s plane was delayed, we located our car and drove to Henley (via Staines BC to pick up some gear). The car is the SMALLEST seven seater you will EVER see, by the time we arrived in Henley to drop off our gear at the accommodation many of us had numb body parts because the bags were packed in on top of us (I don’t think I can emphasise just how tightly we were packed).

Upon arriving at Sequia House, we were greeted by the lovely Odette Moss (and her large dog) who showed us to our rooms and made us feel comfortable. She has been the most helpful, wonderful, generous host and I am so thankful that we were lined up with her.

Quick change in to zooties and we made our way down to the course to rig up the boat and go for a training row.

The training row was tough, we were all so jet lagged and the crew lacked concentration, but this was to be expected after the flight – thank God we didn’t have to qualify on the Friday!

We picked up a bit of shopping and then I cooked us some nice burritos. After demolishing the burritos we all tried to stay awake to get over the jet lag and eventually hit the sack at about 9pm — in the 51 hours prior I had only 2 hours sleep.. zzz…

Friday morning came and we awoke to a fantastic breakfast prepared by Odette, scoffed it down and then ducked away to the course for a training row. It seemed to go all right, however you could still tell we were recovering from jet lag.

Again the process of “eat, sleep, row” carried on for the rest of Friday and Saturday until we had a day off on Sunday (first day off in at least a fortnight).

On Sunday we dropped Ben, Corbs and Zoe down to the train station so they could spend the day in London; Rob, Susanne and Cadeyrn went to Oxford and I hung in Henley for the day. My folks came down from London for the day to meet me which was great 😀 I hadn’t seen them for a few weeks. I took them for a tour of the course and then we ran in to big Philthy Matthews!! So we all went to the Catherine Wheel for lunch which became afternoon tea as well.

We talked with Philthy for hours about his time at Harvard, rowing, politics, Uni, family and all the usual sort. It was great to catch up with him! Ah, I love that kid!

When we all arrived back on the Sunday evening for a wonderful meal that Odette decided to make for us, Cadeyrn was starting to get sick. His sickness lasted through until Tuesday.

This meant that we had not trained as a crew between our last row on Saturday and Tuesday morning when we went for a very short training row.

So that brings me to today. We’re racing Cambridge University at 5:20pm GMT and we are far under-prepared. As Rob said in our crew meeting yesterday, “the only way we can win this first race is with passion, and we’re going to need a heck load”.

Here’s hoping!

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