The Really Big Picture

by eileen hansen


I left my camera at home by mistake this morning – along with my rowing gloves – and gave myself a thorough mental beating as I drove bleary-eyed to the boathouse. It was promising to be one of those incredibly beautiful September sunrises. Damn!

Relax, I told myself. Just row. Be in the moment instead of recording the moment. What a concept.  

When I arrived, I found Stefan adjusting the new rig he'd built to attach his GoPro camera to the oarlock. So much for my unplugged, Zen row.  

Turns out that Stefan wasn't the only paparazzi on the bay. My husband Jay was out doing some dawn photography on and around the Golden Gate when he shot the video above of Stefan and me rowing beneath the bridge.  

Take a look. See that tiny dot – that's Stefan and me rowing along as a seagull soars overhead and the commute traffic roars by on the bridge. The video is super short, maybe 30 seconds. Hang with it and watch as Jay pans out to show the bridge, Cavallo Point, and Angel Island in the distance.  

My friend and fellow rower Kellee Adams saw the video and sums it up best: "How big it is to be so small way out there."

I couldn't have said it better. It fills my soul, this rowing thing. Recorded or not.