I. No racing last weekend after all. The weather was absolutely gorgeous, but was windy enough to result in very rough water. Our visiting friend Rebecca and I were scheduled to race early on Saturday morning (heats A and B of women’s Masters singles). She was already at the start, and I was just about to cross the course to row to the start, when I told the Crossing Marshall to radio in that I wanted to scratch – as soon as I turned perpendicular to the course I realized it was too rough to be safe. He told me they were going to bring everyone in, so he wouldn’t scratch me yet. Apparently four people had fallen in so far. (They had plenty of safety boats to fish them out.) So everyone out on the course had to row back in through the rough water, a definite challenge. They kept postponing the race, and eventually decided to cancel the novice events that had already gone by entirely, and move the womens’ singles to Sunday morning, letting some of the bigger (wider) boats race. All in all we ended up walking back and forth to the park where the race was about four times, between the morning race meeting and then trying to figure out what was going on.

Rebecca and I comforted ourselves with a long kayak paddle in the afternoon, so at least she got to see all of the lake.

Unfortunately, moving our race put us right ahead of the men’s singles, so Rebecca couldn’t row Ted’s boat as planned (she’s much closer to his size than mine). She tried out my racing shell and established that it was at least possible to row it, but Sunday morning was again rough enough that she decided to take my open-water boat, which is much more stable and self-baling. It’s perfectly happy handling those conditions, as long as you don’t expect to go very fast. This time she got only to the park before being told the race was postponed again – they eventually ended up canceling the rest of the races all together. Rebecca did a row down the course just for fun, probably giving a heart attacks to any of the race officials who didn’t know she was in a boat that could handle rough water.

Care and (especially) feeding of a vegetarian athlete was something that worried me a bit beforehand, but we ended up just having pizza on Friday night (carbo-loading!) and a big varied salad with assorted grilled stuff that everyone chose their own to skewer, so that worked out OK, I think. We should have gotten more lunch food, but I was expecting the wonderful and diverse bakery sandwiches this regatta has provided in the past, and they didn’t have them this year.

So it was a great weekend, aside from the small issue of the actual race that was the reason we were there – beautiful weather, a chance to catch up with an old friend, and time at the house. Oh, well.

And also, after all these years it is really nice to have someone other than Ted understand why I don’t go into races expecting to win, and that no, it’s not just that I don’t train enough. (There are three components to being ready for a race: having your head in the game, boat feel/technique, and fitness. I definitely failed on the first one and haven’t gotten nearly enough water time this year, but I actually do feel like I was physically ready for this race – my training plan was very good and I followed it fairly faithfully, aside from breaks for a couple of business trips. I still would likely have come in at the back of the pack, though.

II. Passover is going to be a lot easier to keep this year. I decided last year that I was an honorary Sephard, but I didn’t really fully embrace the possibilities. Sure, I ate some popcorn and maybe a little rice, but that was about it. But I’ve realized that for instance the dinner we had last night (Grilled Chicken Marsala over rice) and the one I plan for Sunday (enchiladas, with corn tortillas) are both Pesadic under the new rules.Not that I really needed a rabbi to tell me what to do, but it’s nice not to feel I’m somehow cheating.

I made gnocchi the other night (having bought shelf-stable ones from the supermarket) and was wondering if they might be Pesadic also but alas, gnocchi contain potatoes, eggs …and flour. Apparently it might be possible to make my own, though, if I figure out what sweet rice flour is and where to buy it. (I doubt I will bother. Once Passover is done, though, the supermarket ones were very good and we’ll definitely be having them again.) Meanwhile, I’m just trying to figure out how to reconcile first Seder on Friday night with some other plans I had – trivia night at a local winery, that we were planning to go to anyway, to pick up our wine club shipment. And okay, a trivia game isn’t really the kind of thing you move around anything as important as a Seder for, but when it’s just a meal for the two of us somehow the importance is diminished a bit.