Head of the Charles

The journey to Boston was only the start of our amazing and hectic week in the States. After we landed, we took a midnight dinner trip to Sweetgreen (per Sofia’s (VIII) request) to get ready for the next day of training.

We spent the following days searching for our blades, perusing through merchandise tents, training on the Charles River in our prospective crews and exploring the streets and many food options of Boston. Not mentioning the debacle of Ines (VII) leaving her bag that had the stroke coach in the restaurant, which resulted in a group of us having to trek back. Then came the day of the Head of the Charles. There was a rude awakening with a fire alarm during the night and other incidents that made it feel like the world was against us, but regardless we made it to the course on time and we were ready to race! On our way up the three-mile course, we made some friends and on the way down, we made some enemies, due to our coxes’ unwavering steering down the treacherous turns of the Charles River. As the crowds roared around us, we made it through Elliot Bridge – which marked our final sprint to the finish line. Overall, we did well, with our 1st eight finishing 25th in Women’s Youth Eights and our four finishing 79th in Women’s Youth Fours. We celebrated with a team dinner at Olive Garden with our new team member/mascot: the Bruins gnome, Montague.

Our group sadly dwindled on Monday morning as college tours began and then there were six. We took our newfound freedom by the reigns and explored everything, ranging from Newbury Street to Party City to the Arnold Arboretum, where we took a fascinating tour – organised by the school – on the histories of how different trees came to be. Unfortunately, it was cut short by a freak lightning storm, and we had to run for our lives to the T (tube in Boston). In the next few days, along with our morning runs/walks and breakfast trips to Tatte, we learnt more about the history of Boston through the Boston Tea Party (huzzah!), the Institute of Contemporary Art and the Freedom Trail. We ended the week with a final trip to CVS, some beat boxing, a podcast finale, more animal crackers, and some Elvis Presley playing as we touched down in London.

Malaika (VII)