Sleep didn't come easy last night. It's comical now - those darn kids upstairs come alive at 23:00. Ok, that wasn't the reason.
I wasn't the first one up nor the last. The coffee was strong. I think DeUSA sensed the nervousness and wanted to amp us up a bit. We are into a morning routine now. Greg walks the beach early, De heads out to the grocery store, I walk to my peaceful place, Vicki reads, KC and Gabe are on the computer and Will and Andrew fill in with entertainment. Kent commands. He was hell bent on buying tickets for water polo and taekwando tomorrow. The boys and I wanted to walk up the Cristo so passed on buying tickets. How smart am I... Kent and I are more emotional today. Him because she's worked hard for four years and this is the end, me because I can't stand the intensity.
Carlo picks us up in the van. Andrew and Will provide pump up music. The ride is a short one (thankfully) and we touch down at Flamingo Beach just as Bri's family arrives. We're all tense. I hug Bri's mom, Ammy. It all gets good again until we go through security. Different rules again for today. I get a leatherman in (forgot it was in my back pack from yesterday. Ya know, just in case Sketchy Beach got sketchy) but they want to confiscate my cow bells, MY COW BELLS!!! Even I know there's nothing sane about that. Floyd comes to my rescue just about the time I'm about to take down the Marine who's touching my bells (three of them). Floyd is a gentle man from Oregon who is a volunteer. Floyd talks me off the cliff (apparently jails here aren't too nice) and we go and hide my cow bells under the ticket office. He even puts leaves over them. I say a prayer for Floyd.
Our umbrella is right in front of the Kiwi's (New Zealanders). They're a jovial group but have nothing on us. We have Will and Andrew who are dressed to the USA nines. People from all countries come up and ask to take a photo with them.
|De Dibiase (Julie's twin (not really), Andrew Bohl, Gabe Dibiase (X boat skipper who turned it one this year as a second year skipper - The Flyin' Hawaiian) Will Haeger and Anne Porter Muller).
They are instant beach celebrities. The boats usually sail out past the hordes on the beach but today they were towed out by their coach, Dave. Each boat is given a window to get towed out and the girls are sixth. We were by far the loudest, most obnoxious group. Chanting "U-S-A" and waving flags we actually saw a slight wave from Bri. I wish I had had binoculars to see their faces. I bet they were smiling.
We sat there for hours and hours and for some strange reason, my confidence in them medaling starts building. Luke, Annie's boyfriend (from Canada) explains that the girls were in four protests yesterday, two against them (which they won) and two where they protested other boats (Austria was thrown out and France wasn't -- was what I think he said). Anyway, Bri didn't get back to the Village until 23:00 but her boyfriend said her spirits were great. We also found out that when the squall line went through a few days ago they had to cut their halyard to get their mainsail down. It then got caught under the boat and was (is) is quite a state. The overseeing committee did not allow them to change out their sail. They determined it wasn't totaled. Reminds me of insurance companies with cars. Yesterday they sailed with a somewhat ragged sail but I'm confident Dave Ullman has everything sorted by now. He's a wizard.
Tonight's dinner was going to be a celebratory meal with the Provancha/Haeger clan and the girls (24 of us). We're still doing it (sans the girls). This is our dry run for tomorrow.
Good luck to everyone at Inlands. Here's to fair winds and great racing.
Love to all and keep those thoughts and prayers for ONE MORE DAY!
Tomorrow is red shirt day again!