You Went to the Olympics??

It seems so long ago, and yet also quite like yesterday: the 2004 Olympics in Athens. The “athlete experience” is quite different from the “as seen on TV” experience, so let me give you some of the highlights.

Sailing Athens 2004 Daniel Forster

3 Best Olympic Memories

  1. Walking into the opening ceremonies. Surrounded by a sea of red white and blue uniforms, every face—athletes, volunteers, coaches, VIPs, audience—stretched wide into a smile. “USA! USA! USA!”
  2. Checking in for the first race and looking up at our gleaming white mainsail. For every other regatta, I would’ve called out our boat number (341); for the Games, that number had been removed. All that remained was our country code, so I called up to the race committee: “Good morning, USA.”
  3. Winning race #7.  Every competitor had their country’s flag painted on their spinnaker, so heading to the finish we had a very visual (and visceral) OMG moment: we’re winning a race at the Olympics! (We also won race #10, but by then we were mathematically eliminated from the medals… so we already felt like failures.)

Why didn’t we win a medal? Read the award-winning story about my worst day at the Games: The No Good, Very Bad Windiest Day

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