Sunday, January 28, 2024

no one asked

A memory from the month or so I was a college athlete when I was in grad school... 

Although I didn't actually row, I used to meet the college rowing team at dawn to practice with them. My job was to be the coxon. (I got recruited in the college dining hall because I was smaller than the rowers.)

It was a fun job--I sat facing the bow, counted strokes, and yelled over the slap of oars and splash of water for people to go faster or look out or turn. 

Until one day the water was extra rocky, and  suddenly afraid of falling into the water--I yelled out: 
"Steady, steady! I can't swim!" 

Everyone was horrified.

"Why didn't you tell us," they asked.

"No one asked me," I whispered, truthfully.

My family takes this story as a reminder that I seem to have no fear/sense sometimes.

Pic: I was reminded today because the Red Cedar, usually so staid, is very muddy and boisterous this weekend because of the sudden thaw. I've seen little kids walk across the top of these rapids--not today though.


StephLove said...

Our creeks are high now, too, because of all the melted snow.

StephLove said...

Also, good story.

Gillian said...


Nicole said...

Ahhhh Maya!!!! That just gave me secondhand stress from something that probably happened 20 years ago! Frequently at my parents' lake, someone dies by drowning - going out into a boat or something with no lifejacket, and the weather up there is super unpredictable. It always turns out the person in question couldn't swim and didn't wear a lifejacket. I am a decent swimmer and even while paddleboarding I wear a lifejacket because you never know!

Nance said...

Oh my! I suppose they never asked because they assume everyone can swim.

Confession: I can't swim, either! I mean, I can do enough to keep afloat, but I was never taught how to swim.

NGS said...

This is like all the sailors on The Wager who couldn't swim! I can't swim, either, but I like to think that if I had to make my living on the sea, I'd try to learn!

maya said...

Steph--same here. And thanks :).

Gillian-- :).

Nicole!! You're back!!! I'm so sorry about the secondhand stress. Yes, it was over 20 years ago and before I had kids etc. I'd like to think I have a bit more sense now. And I was wearing a lifevest.

Nance and Engie--I imagined all American kids learn to swim, so I'm surprised and gratified to find fellowship here with you! Nance--I remember that tidbit about you from a recent post :)

Nicole said...

I actually came back here to check and YOU WERE WEARING A LIFEVEST I CAN SLEEP NOW. *exhales*

on a break (Winter Break)

It was so rude of Big A to cheerily text me "one more year" on New Year's day and then explain that in 2025 Nu would be off to...