Ben Michaelson’s Pan Am Diary: In Hot Water

This is the fifth installment in Ben Michaelson's diary in which he shares his experiences as a member of the US Pan American Games Team..

By Ben Michaelson

SANTO DOMINGO, August 8. TODAY we made our first trip to the competition pool. It is a spectacular
facility, especially considering the delays in construction. There are two 50-meter pools, one 25-meter pool, and seating for about 4,000 people.

There's just one problem–the water is 88 degrees!!!

Apparently the need to cool the water in this tropical climate was overlooked, and with only three days until the competition begins, some serious engineering needs to be done and fast.

Regardless if the water is 79.8 degrees or 98.7, the water is the same for everyone. Under less than ideal conditions, some athletes will give up and blame poor conditions for their poor performance. Others, however, will rise above adversity and perform at their best anyway. I know I've trained to do just that, and Team USA won't let a little warm water keep us down…we're going to set the water on fire anyway!!!

Back at the Village, everyone is very friendly, and the locals are very proud to be hosting these Games. My three years of Spanish are all coming back, and I'm actually able to communicate with the locals fairly efficiently.

Just a few more days till race day!!! Talk to you all later…


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