My heart was beating and I was dizzy with nerves when pushed into the muddy, green river stream. The beach was small and the tide did not give us much space – so we had to be efficient. Sixty paddlers had to get on the water at the same time from Shadwell Bassin. Freek tried to stay close in the clutter of people.
We paddled underneath one bridge after the other – people above us stopped and waved and cheered. It was noisy and, compared to sandy-shored Denmark, the waves were rapid and quick – one person capsized right away. Needless to say, my anxiety was high and lasted for a while.