So here we are in Munich–the weather has been beautiful, and the jet lag has been merciful (full night of sleep last night after a less-than-restful flight over). We are back at the same hotel that out 2008 World Cup stayed at which means at least one thing: awesome breakfast (and seriously precarious parking lot situations). We are here with the USA light and heavy men logging a few miles on the 1972 Olympic Course at Munich-Oberschleissheim and we are LOVING it. The course is a beautiful manmade lake with Caribbean-blue waters and overgrown carp which quietly patrol the length of the course. These fish prove to be very distracting since their enormous black forms can be seen clearly at any point on the lake in the clear, shallow water…even when cruising by in a rowing shell. The park is only vaguely reminiscent of a World Class competitive arena as various elements of the concrete architecture are now overgrown with local vegetation, and the crowds that now frequent the park are typically families with strollers and umbrellas, rollerbladers and cyclists. Only the giant stone grandstands that remain really serve as an indicator of the scale of the energy and competition that created the venue…and they are impressive. Even with a nearly-annual World Cup being held here, there is very little to suggest that the lake is much more than a quiet recreational facility for locals and their families to enjoy.
Then the Americans crash the party.
After practice yesterday as a means to combat the jet-lag doldrums, most of the Women’s Team took a swim in the lake off the docks. We were joined by the men’s pair as they finished their workout…they docked their boat and promptly jumped in the water themselves without even taking oars out. It was a wonderful way to end the afternoon and a huge morale boost for everyone. There is talk of taking another post-practice swim this afternoon.
It seems that we are joined by a few other elite international athletes from Chile and possibly (?) the female single sculler from Azerbaijan. And of course a few colorful locals…such as the 70+ gentlemen who were out for a spin in their wooden 2X this morning wearing matching magenta polo shirts. The stroke seat whipped out a pretty impressive Canon DSLR on the dock after their row as we were getting oars and requested a few photos of Stesha and me. Not with them…just of us standing on the dock. Flexing.
Anyway, on to more important things: mainly my current video editing crisis. In an act of personal liberation, I decided to take this trip to Europe with only my iPad, leaving my MacBook Pro at home (and all my work files that are stored on it as well). I decided to do this as an opportunity to take some time away from work, to relax, and focus on my “real job” while at Worlds. The only things I wanted to be able to do were: email, blog, Facebook and be able to upload photos and videos. I believed, foolishly, that I would be able to do all of that with just a simple purchase of the iPad camera connection kit. However, the wonderful HD movie files that are created by my little Kodak Playsport camera are not compatible with my iPad. I cannot make videos!!! I spent all day yesterday furiously searching for a solution on Mac help forums, the App store and finally a Hail Mary Google search…with no positive results. I need to be able to convert MOV files to MPG4 in order to edit them on my iPad. The trick is I need to be able to convert them WITH my iPad, not on a second machine (because I don’t have a second machine…that’s the whole point). I have iMovie, I just need the content! If anyone has any ideas on how to make this work…I’d be much obliged. Otherwise no videos from Worlds this year…
Back to the course again this afternoon for another spin. The boat is going well, when I can steer it straight, and when I can hear Stesha’s calls from bow. I keep telling her that I’m getting older and it’s harder for me to hear all the way in the front, but she doesn’t seem to be sensitive to the needs of us geriatrics on the Team. Kids these days.
Long Live the Dream,
P.S. Speaking of geriatrics, make sure to wish Coach Volpenhein a happy 50th today!
Also, I have to add how disappointed I was in the lack of commentary on my last post. Really NO ONE has opinions on this stuff?