By Jay Gulitti (‘06), Crew Coach
Despite the current swell of 90-degree weather here in New York’s Hudson Valley, there are creepings of fall peeking in at the edges of everything. Due to the heat, people have been sticking to the shade or heading to the water to keep cool. Being down at the river this time of year makes me think not only of the coming months, but also the start of a new rowing season, fresh with the straining of new muscles and the strengthening of old. I struggle with meeting this season at its head; while I’m excited to see what comes next, I always find myself missing the sport. The summer at Mowglis has become the only time of the year that I remain thoroughly involved with Crew. It’s become one of the things that has taken the sidelines, as the rest of life has revealed itself. This summer has been particularly difficult to leave behind, due in no small part to the way the camp as a whole embraced Crew Week.
The days leading up to Crew Week build up the atmosphere in camp slowly to a boiling point, as older campers return from squads, and campers all begin to speculate about Crew affiliations and boat lineups, with rumors of Crew Leaders cropping up as steadily as the increased rate of practice. I always find it hard to eat at that Sunday evening’s picnic supper due to the excitement of the coming announcements, and this summer was no different. As the night drew to a close, boys and staff returned to their dorms ready for an exciting week, but not until after they had applauded the newly announced boats, making sure to cheer particularly loudly for their Crew Leaders: Mr. Jack Richardson and Mr. Jack Cherry, the latter of whom was still on the bus returning to camp from a long weekend away. He was back by morning, however, just in time to help Mr. Richardson hand out bandanas to camp. Given that both of our Crew Leaders this year were first-time counselors, veteran staff on their crews wasted no time in lending a helping hand, and together they organized the boys in several productive days of learning cheers, making posters, and publishing some of the finest editions of the esteemed Scarlet Journal and Blue Banner that the camp has seen in some time. Morale was high, thanks in no small part to an early announcement from the Denites teaching us all about what it means to be sportsmanlike and how to respect our opponents, and Crew Week was off to a great start.