Dragons Abreast regatta
Julie Kesby, Sue Drew, Theresa Kerby and Joy Tonkin. Photo: Lyn Mills
Looking through the smoke haze on our lake on a warming Sunday, the planned moment of silence for a simple ceremony of ‘‘flowers on the water’’ dispersed for friends, family, colleagues and loved ones who’ve died of breast cancer demonstrated the power of silence.
This was an important interlude in the Dragons Abreast’s 12th annual regatta, where the intensity of a large group of people spread across the banks were lost in thought - perhaps wondering about the fires that caused our smoke haze on this day.
The reality of this Centennial Corporate Challenge, organised to the highest standard down to the last sprig of lavender in the portable loos was a noisy gathering of fit paddlers in wacky outfits competing in a steady run of elimination heats during the day culminating in the final winners. This year, it was The Planeteers from the Department of the Environment receiving the Pink Lady Shield.
The teams were a diverse lot from government, corporate and social circles who set up camp in the tent alley that was a busy as a south coast camping ground at Christmas.
There were masseurs easing sore muscles, fruit for paddlers, cupcakes to raise money and the wafting aromas of a snag sizzle.
Bea Brickhill, with her calf problem, was hobbling on with just an ice pack, as the regatta must go on despite this dragon’s injuries and the limbering up exercises to avoid that for teams were as enthusiastic as any Sunday morning effort to rid the body of Saturday night indulgences.
The music was current interspersed with a rallying call to team members and for someone to please collect the sambos delivered for the Centenary team. And any minute I expected Smoke on the Water from Deep Purple to blast through the speakers.
But no. This was serious stuff and the dragons as a team of exceptional organisers were determined that the grandest dragon of all who couldn’t be there because of that smoke on the water and in the air would be very proud of their efforts. Anna they did you proud.