2012 Head of the Charles Update

We received an update from Betsy Mitchell about her adventure to the HOCR.

We are having a great time. We arrived in Boson at around 2pm. The taxi ride from the airport was a delight as the trees were showing some wonderful fall colors with the setting of city backdrop. It was exciting to drive along the river where we saw lots of boats practicing and many more parked on trailers. We went straight to the Northeastern boathouse and met up with Patrick Johnson...
We rigged the three boats and enjoyed watching boats practicing past the boathouse. It was great having Joe able to point out different boats, teams, strengths and challenges. There was a drizzling rain which kept things cool. We also saw one of the national women’s teams who went by all rowing on the square. We headed out in the van after 5pm, suitcases loaded in the back. Dave drove us through some heavy neighborhood traffic to the prearranged restaurant, a Mexican Cantina, which was a welcome relief as we hadn’t had lunch ! We all dove in to the chips and salsa! Eventually Oksana Masters and Rob Jones arrived and we all clapped as they joined their group. The rock stars had arrived ! They gave out several oar paddle gifts to their coaches including one to Patrick. It was about this time that my cell phone camera went down. Fortunately several people took pictures .
We then headed to the airport where we spent a while waiting for competitor Dan’s delayed flight from DC. He and his wife, Stephanie finally arrived and we all headed to the hotel. During check in, Dan’s rowing partner, Travis Green arrived along with his wife and their 4 daughters (all under the age of 7 including a baby, who had driven. (well ,not the baby)
It is like a homecoming as we have been together at the Bayada and Anacostia. The camaraderie makes being part of the adaptive rowing community a special honor as there is support for one another, though competitors on the water. This is true sportsmanship.
Saturday morning we will gather in the lobby at 11 am and return to the boathouse, practice and enjoy the races, booths and ambiance. It is hard to believe that we are really here !
Patrick shared with us in the van a story of how rowing had had such a deep personal impact in healing for both Oksana and Rob. It is inspiring to hear those stories and to see firsthand how each person is impacted in such a positive way. Thanks Joe and Todd, you both are making a difference in so many lives and it is exciting to see our program grow.
— Betsy Mitchell