On Friday, June 22 I received an email from one of the organizers of the 20 Bridges Swim in New York. After they reviewed the tidal flow chart for my upcoming swim around Manhattan Island, they noted the currents will not be helpful for a slow swimmer (Me). They recommended that I drop-out of the race and reschedule for next year. They are the experts with this swim and I highly respect their recommendation. At the age of 67 and being a slow swimmer, I know the odds are stacked against me for a successful outcome. However, I believe that life sends us challenges and how we react to these challenges defines us. I'm going for it. So, I am NOT rescheduling. My swim will start this Saturday, June 30 at 9:10am. Regardless of the outcome I will be proud that I attempted such an iconic swim.
There will be two Spot Trackers activated about 9am on Saturday. One tracker will be on the kayaker and will be activated by the New York Open Water organization. You can visit their website and click on my name: http://www.nyopenwater.org/2010-20-bridges-1/. I will be swimming alongside the kayaker.
My sister-in-law Jean Murdoch-Gallant will be on the main boat with the Observer Mary Egan and boat pilot Paul Stone. My assigned kayaker is John Russell. I will be swimming between both boats for safety reasons. The second tracker will be with Jean (see link below). The second tracker will be activated in case there is a problem with the other tracker.
Because I am a slow swimmer, I need to reach a designated area in the swim by a certain time. If I cannot reach that area, I will be stopped and pulled from the water. And, be listed as a DNF (did not finish). In my many years of marathon swimming, I have experienced Mother Nature at her best and worse. I am willing to take a chance and hope that Mother Nature will surprise me.
My swim will be in memory of my brother Robbie who died at the age of 34 from a heart attack and my brother Johnny who died at the age of 17 in a tragic high school accident. I will have their names written on my arms.
I would like to thank my sister-in-law Jean for taking time from her busy schedule to crew for me. Many thanks to my family and friends for their ongoing words of encouragement and support.
A special thank you to Swimsuits for All. I am so proud to be wearing their swimsuits for my upcoming swims. They truly believe in the diversity of female athletes that they come in all shapes, sizes, and ages. Their sponsorship for this swim is very much appreciated.
The link below is the Spot tracker that my sister-in-law Jean will activate on the main boat ten minutes before the start of my swim.