No photos of alligators or manatees yet but soon! In the darkness of the early morning, my plane touched down in Orlando, Florida where the Canadian women's rowing team is having their first training camp of the new year. For most, it's pretty exciting to get back on the water after almost a month off. I have been lucky to be rowing, but the sweetness for me comes in a sunny, 15C package instead of rain, rain and more rain. Rain. It's cold in the rain. Did you know it rains in Victoria? Anyway, you get my point.
So here I am looking forward to being with the team, having some great training sessions, working really hard, all that stuff. I'm almost to the point of being nervous with excitement because usually I'm out there alone with no gauge and no way to tell for sure just what speed I have, however I see this camp as pressure to perform. Then, as the plane is taxiing towards the gate I hear from the seat behind, a comment. It comes from one of three little girls (probably heading to Disney World). She speaks with amazement and awe and with the adoration that only an eight year old could muster, "Awww, palm trees. I've never seen palm trees before", then a slight pause, "I think I'm going to hug a palm tree". I think it might have been on the top ten list of cutest things I have ever heard. That little comment changed my whole perspective on this whole camp. Even after 12am after more than 12hrs of travel, she made me smile to myself in my seat. Relax, have fun, do what you do. Life is pretty damn good as an athlete and no practice at this camp is the Olympic final, so chill. I'm just gonna hug palm trees and enjoy every moment on the water :)