Lindy Edward just finished a grueling morning practice and now she's rushing to the hospital. She's not hurt; she's just trying to get to work on time. As she hurries through the halls the other nurses glance at Lindy, then out the window. It's freezing rain, and her hair's a little disheveled.
"You went rowing this morning?" They laugh and somebody adds, "Get some Band-Aids on those fingers!"
A pleasant sense of pride settle in. Yes, Lindy rowed this morning. Lindy, 64, captains the Marin Masters Women's Crew. She's a reserved woman who leads by example, setting the standards for good attitude and strong commitment. Her team has been quite successful over the past few years. In the four times Lindy's competed at Head of the Charles her boats have come in the top four, including a first place finish in 2008 and a second place finish in 2009, both in the 60 category.
Lindy was quick to remind me that though success is obviously what the team shoots for, from day to day, the experience is more about being a part of the team than the outcome. Lindy enjoys a great sense of community at Marin. "It just has added so much to life." Lindy's husband also rows and her kids both rowed at Marin and later at the University of Washington. She enjoys the team's Saturday post practice chats at the nearby coffee shop, and the chance to be friends with women of so many different ages. Her closest friend on the team is 33, "in normal life that doesn't happen." Lindy adds that, "in masters rowing it can be really positive if you're older and can add to the boat."
Her professional life brings Lindy Edward into a different world. She's a nurse at an urgent and primary care clinic in San Francisco. Most of her patients are homeless or come from very low income families. Lindy explained that her patients are "people so unlike other people in my life," but between her work and rowing she's found a link between them. "I realize that people just need to be listened to, patted on the back, somebody to believe in them, look them in the eye. You need to be completely there- totally committed to what you're doing that moment."