I woke up in the middle of the morning, which was a mistake considering the event I had in about 9 hours. I tried get a grip of myself, but I was too nervous.
A few hours later I decided to get out of bed. I didn't let the upcoming competition interfere with my daily routines: I got dressed, drank my cup of coffee and read the newspaper. I tried not to get out of focus and keep a cool head.
When the clock turned 2 p.m. I ate a small lunch, got into my car, fastened my seatbelt and took off. After driving for half an hour I arrived at Wisconsin High. After taking my bag from the compartment I headed for the main entrance, asked for directions to the changing rooms and started my warm-up.
The whole time I felt nervous and excited, but still I this was something I could handle.
Ten minutes before the start an announcer shouted the names of the participants, mine included. From this moment on, nothing was allowed to go wrong.
The last minute was at hands. I got on the edge, started to concentrate and listened to the countdown. The seconds flew, as did I. I proceeded rapidly, faster than anyone else. I was the first to make the turn. Only the last strokes left, yes, I did it. I managed to win. Never did I even think otherwise. The feeling I had was purely extatic. This is what competing is about.