Actually, I was awake at 05:43 am because I did not want to hear the sound of my alarm clock. Half asleep, I got to the lagoon at the UCSB and started looking for a larger group of people who were going to row at 06:15 am (!) - there are three slots on Monday to Thursday and you can pick one each day. The 06:15 am one exists on all days... including Friday (no other slots) - and it's absolutely worth coming:
Two of the four sessions are at the lagoon, the other two ones on rowing machines in the gym. And the Friday one is at the UCSB stadium (Harder stadium).
When our names were registered, I was immediately asked, if I was "the graduate student" - most new rowers are undergraduates. It seems to be the same for the swimming team. I didn't care too much because we were all stuck in the same boat when an oar was caught in algae, some huge brown-green mesh. That really made us slow... But it's a wonderful feeling to be on the water and moving by your own force - recommendable!
There's also a lot of tradition in rowing (it's the oldest sport which one university against another competed): The winning team gets the shirts of the losing one (only concerning men ;-)). And the winner team's coxswain is thrown into the water... I'm too tall for a coxswain ;-)
Posted by Lotta at 8:27 PM