Getting settled into my new home here in the Green Mountains of Vermont but seriously wishing I was in Galway to feel the excitement of the arriving teams. It feels like yesterday, the Stop-over team and I were camping out in the trailers, scoping out comfy places to sleep and dining on "non-SailTrim" approved snacks to stay awake waiting for Telefonica Black and Delta Lloyd's arrivals.
My feather bed is by far more comfortable than the sofas we found in the Grey Goose VIP tent! However, being tucked away from it all is bit of a culture shock. Anyone who's trained for a major event, planned a wedding or completed a large project that consumed your mind and body for an extended period of time understands this feeling. The feeling of emptiness and an eary calm.
It's crazy quiet too. The inbox is manageable. The phone does not ring. Skype is idle. There is no chatter about my desk. There is no silly UHF radio squawking in my ear and random calls from crew concerning a unique photo opportunity, "Jenn, photo op in font of Ireland Pavilion!!" Then me dropping what I am doing to find life sized bobble head U2 band members or catching a glimpse of Joe Fallon and Kenny Read practicing for their first pitch at Fenway.
I loved it.
I miss it.
We wouldn't love it if it never came to an end though and the Volvo Ocean Race is on it's last few legs. I remember while in Alicante for the start and all the Volvo Event Management crew (VEMUK) acquired their new kit and the jackets were fresh and crisp. Nearly around the world, the Race Official Orange is not nearly as bright. A weathered shade that shows hard work and experience.
The experience and looking to the future of the event. This excites me most. I didn't make it to all the stop-overs but I will eventually because the race will live on. I'm pretty mad about this event and though the history of the America's Cup is beautiful, I've yet to miss it. If the Volvo Ocean Race experienced a similar fate, I'd be devastated.
Granted it's not about me. The people involved with his event are special. The only other sailors I've worked with who really remind me of a Volvo Ocean Race Sailor or "personality" are those from the 18footer world. However, saying that cautiously as a couple very close friends are from my One Design Grand Prix days!
The people, friends you make working with or alongside this race are not casual. They stay with you even when time zones and oceans separate. The life is extreme and the nature of that creates tight bonds. There are personalities that will stay with me forever, even if I don't cross paths with them again till 2011.
The Boston Stop-over, though not without it's "bobbles," we did have a couple glitches on the tail end. Can't forget the tanker incident too quickly!
It all made for a good story, which will keep the Volvo Ocean Race at Fan Pier Boston in the history books.
Thank you to everyone who came down to the Pier, it's a great site to see so many people come watch a sailboat race. Was very impressive!
Ahh, the therapeutic effect of sitting in a little cafe and reflecting on a great experience. Hopefully this journey will see me sitting in a cafe at another stop-over before this show is over and we begin the countdown to 2011-12.