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Gone with the wind?

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by , September 13th, 2009 at 02:37 AM (890 Views)
I grabbed an early morning coffee at Mc D’s and was surprised that it was actually drinkable. The free WiFi is working (a rarity) and I can check e-mails and delete spam. There is a brief moment of rain, and then it turns into a beautiful sunny, but windy day. To the beach for a morning swim....
At the beach, Frida is in her beach chair surrounded with boxes, yellow caps, and swimmers. I introduce myself, and extend regards from all those folks that asked me to. Frida asks me how long I plan to swim this morning... I respond, “two hours”. She then asks if I have a booking... I identify our pilot, and my relay mates. “There’s one of yours”, Frida says while pointing to Terry who had just entered the water. She hands me yellow cap with the number 3 on it and records it in a ledger book. I ask Barry about the restrictions of swimming in the harbor as we were told that we have been venturing out too far, and the locals would take issue with that; he says to stay within 100 meters of the beach and that each loop is 2500 meters. As I start toward the water, Barry stops me and asks if I’ve greased up. I respond that I used a little bodyglide on my pits. Barry asks Frida if I need to grease up for a two hour swim... Frida looks me over.... says “grease him”. Who am I to argue? Barry dons the rubber gloves and applies vasaline to my arm pits, neck, shoulders, upper back and jaw line.
This is the strongest wind I’ve seen here so far but the swim is wonderful and I enjoy the waves near the south wall. Its crowded out there and I have two head-on collisions though I was pretty focused on trying to keep low and stable, so they weren’t at “high speed”.
Spoke to our pilot at 7:00 PM things are not looking good for the next few days... 25 - 35 mile per hour winds. I inquire with him about bookings for next year and there are only a few 3 and 4 slots available. After hearing that no one went out last tide and it appears that maybe half of the swimmers might get a shot this tide, I am questioning weather it would be wise for me to book a 3rd or 4th slot in the queue for a solo next year, or if I should book a 1 or 2 slot for 2011.
Terry and I have decided to do a 4 hour swim in the harbor tomorrow as we will have at least 3 days (probably 5) until we get our chance to swim, and Frida and crew will be on hand to do feedings (and apply grease to needed areas).
I'm back at Mc D's for my connection to the outside world. There is a steady drizzle coming down, but I won't get a first hand feel for the wind until I head out to the beach.
Everyone here is waiting, waiting, waiting......

We plan to venture to Canterbury (20 mins away) this afternoon just for a change of scenery and to hang out with Laura who has been at the beach swimming with us. She has done this swim a few times already.

This is the buoy i check for water conditions:

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Updated September 13th, 2009 at 03:33 AM by chaos (duplicate)



  1. pwb's Avatar
    Can you tell us who Frida is -- patron goddess of channel swimmers? really tough local life guard?