Monday, June 4, 2012

Dragon Boat Festival

 A couple of weekends ago George and I competed in our first--the 11th Annual Dragon Boat Festival with our APABA-DC team on May 19-20th, 2012 in Georgetown.  The weather was absolutely perfect--sunny with a slight breeze and no humidity!  Though it was brutal waking up at 6 a.m Saturday and Sunday, competing in multiple races, and coming home sore and bruised, we had a blast hanging out with everyone and rowing our asses off!  I even gained some arm muscles..but have probably since lost it...

I didn't realize how much focus, strategy, training, stamina, and team work dragon boat takes!  I highly recommend it to everyone who loves being out on the water and getting a good work out without being stuck in the gym.  And NO, it is not just an asian sport.  We saw many diverse teams out on the water--most of them kicking our scrawny asses!

APABA-DC entered two teams, Water and Fire.  George ended up being on the ...ahem ..weaker Water team because he kept wacking people in the back and splashing too much water (hehehehe).  I was placed on the Fire team--the more hardcore team!  Fire competed amongst the elites--with teams who will be representing the U.S in Hong Kong this summer in the International Dragon Boat Festival. 

Rise and shine! Bright and early and ready to set up! 
Day 1: 250 m race.

Holy crap I can't believe I'm up this early for the sole purpose of a sporting event...
7 a.m--teams setting up

Need coffee!  We were healthy the first day!  Bagels and coffee 

Team meeting

Opening ceremonies

We ready!


Running to see where we placed after placement rounds

Stretching it out!

Team captains Cathy and Nhat

There's George on our Water team!

My team -- Fire--racing the 250 m and getting our butts kicked!  We're in Boat #2!

Exhausteeddd--sleep eating a banana

Passed out

One of the crazy elite teams we rowed against--DCH Racing from Queens, NY.  They were the 2006 Champions of the Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival in New York.

I love asian drinks and snacks!!!  Coconut juice and chrysanthemum juice boxes!

ridiculously jumbo bag of shrimp chips and crackers

And Banh Mis for lunch!!!

Ngai, George and I in an enticing conversation about butt pads

It was so fun to see all the teams camping out.  There was even a blind team called "Outta Sight" and a breast cancer survivors' team!

Dry runs

Rowing 250 m out to the starting line for the 250m race.  I'm 3rd on the left!!! =D  I was freaking tired from just rowing out to the starting line!  Damn paddles were hella heavy!

Fire team coming back from a hard race

George stuffing his face with a red velvet cupcake right before getting called to marshal for his third race of the day

Cheering the APABA Water team on!

I LOVE this photo of Nhat celebrating our win!

End of Day 1, poopped and sore!

Day 2, 500 m

Ziyang found some noodles for breakfast..

Breakfast of champs! Melody's ginger scallion noodles that she made at 5 a.m!  Eaten with coffee straws as chopsticks

and Krispy Kreme ofcourse!

Group warm ups are always fun!  George ain't having it

Team Water rowing out to the 500m start line.  What sucks? The start line was 500ms out!

Eye on the prize

In between races, we danced!  Doing the shuffle..
 Fire team placed respectably in the B Division and ended up winning Bronze in the 250 m race while Water placed in the E division and won Bronze and Silver in the 250 m and 500 m.
Yay team!

To learn more about dragon boating and see some seriously synced up hard core rowing from some of the professional teams, watch below:

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