48 teams of women competed in heats of 4 in the False Creek Women's
dragon boat regatta. This event is the dreamchild of Marina McCready,
and is a fundraiser for the False Creek Women's Dragon Boat team – one of the consistently BEST dragon boat teams in the world, and led by coach Andrea Dillon, one of the most inspiring coaches I have ever been honoured to be on the same boat with.
There is a prize for the best costume. The Lady Bugs were in full
force. There was a team dressed in wedding dresses. One team all wore
black afro wigs, and performed a version of “Stop, in the name of
love… before we beat your boat.”
This event attracts many out of town teams. They came from Victoria,
Nanaimo, Portland, Tacoma, Kelowna, Chilliwack… I got to hang with my
favorite US teams: Tacoma Dragon Boat Association and Wasabi Women Team Huge,
receiving hugs from friends on each team. TDBA invited us to go down to Seattle on July 2nd, for dragon boat
barrel racing on Green Lake in Seattle. This will be part of
Seattle's Sea Fest. I have always felt that Green Lake would be
perfect for a dragon boat race.
I also saw many friends from Vancouver teams… Pat and Shelly are now paddling on False Creek Women. I shared with Pat that
this year on Gung Haggis Fat Choy dragon boat team, that I gave a new
paddler the nick name of “The Instigator” – the same nickname that I
gave Pat back in 2001 when we paddled together in San Francisco for the Spirit
of Vancouver team. She laughed as we recounted shared stories of our
wonderful adventures on that trip.
TDBA competed as the
Draco Koa Wahines -translated as dragons with Warrior Spirit Women. It
is the TDBA club that last year reated the world's first ever dragon boat barrel racing event.
The Draco Koa Wahines made the 2nd tier finals, amongst the top 8 teams
out of 48. Very good results for a team with 50% brand new paddlers.
Wow! Roli Women
came first in that race. Louise Lamb drummed Roli to a strong finish…
Louise is one of my favorite drummers ever. I raced with her in Roli's
previous incarnation as GM Turbo Dragons in 2001 for races in Victoria, Kelowna and San Francisco.
Louise was the featured guest drummer for the False Creek Women's Team in the Thalassa dragon boat documentary that also featured our Gung Haggis Fat Choy dragon boat team as the documentary's multicultural component.
Wasabi Women Team Huge finished
2nd to hosts False Creek Women. These are two of the best Women's teams
in the world. Both medaled at the 2001 World championships in
Philadelphia and have continued their consistency. Suzi Cloutier
of Wasabi is a good friend of mine and wrote me a story about Wasabi's 2004 trip to the World Club Crew Championships in Cape Town South Africa.
Suzi and I love to surprise each other with special gifts. This time she honoured me with a belated
birthday card + huge chocolate truffle from her favorite chocolateria
in Portland Oregon. My gift to her and her team mate Carey – both of whom I
have known since 1990/91, were Canada Post stamps that featured the 2002 Wasabi team issued in 2003. Carey was very excited to finally have the stamp.
After the races, my girlfriend Deb and I took Suzi and her room mates Kristen and Margie over to Mario's Gelati
for a special treat of Italian gelato and/or sorbetto. Of course Suzi tells
everybody about the time I brought her a litre of wasabi flavoured
gelato from Casa Gelato,
and says it was torture, because it had too much wasabi to eat.
ACK! Anyways this time around we all had double scoops on
waffle cones. Suzi and I both picked lichee sorbetto. Of course Deb had
to tell Suzi about my recent obsession with lichee martinis and Soho