|I would have liked to wear this today, but alas...|
I had to work
Congratulations. That's what I have been hearing all day. Happy birthday. Not mine. Norway's! 203 years ago, the nation now known as Norway started. After Denmark 'lost' Norway due to the side they took during the Napoleonic wars, it was given to Sweden. However, Norway felt it might be the time to do it themselves and wrote their first constitution. It took another century though before they finally became independent.
Anyway, that fact is celebrated each year on May 17th and there are children's parades in the morning (got stuck in four different ones this morning), people's parades and the graduate's parades in the afternoon. Plus lots of other things. Here where I made my home, there is the rowing race. Old fashioned wooden boats, six rowers and a cox and off you go.
|In my first year here, aren't they the cutest?|
I took part in my first year here in Norway, not really knowing what I had signed up for and after that I took over as organiser of our little band of rowers. Ie, I organise the training sessions. This year for some reason, I managed to get several other people interested in joining and all of a sudden we had two boats!
I thought it might be fun to row against each other, the rest didn't agree. Then we had to anyway and in the end we didn't. Team two was on first, but unfortunately the boat they were racing against, didn't get out of the way enough and it was hard getting away. They did in the end though and finished after a respectable 6 minutes and 53 seconds.
|During our last training session|
After that it was our turn. Team one. We got away finely, but were playing catch-up with the boat we were racing. However, we had decided to take it slightly easy on the away stretch and then going full tilt on the home stretch. They rowed, I yelled, they rowed some more, I yelled some more and we slowly crept past the other boat. My voice went everywhere, but when we got over the line, we had beaten our direct opponents by one boat length.
But that wasn't the most important to us, we wanted to beat our colleagues and we did with a time of 6.28. Only because they were hindered at the start, otherwise it would have been very close! However, even though we did beat our direct opponents (who were a mixed team as well), there was one more mixed team left and they eventually beat us by 14 seconds. So, team 1 ended in second place, while team 2 ended in fourth (out of five).
|Team 1 was green, team 2 was pink|
We will have a great competition next year!