Jubilee flotilla inspires rowers
The world suddenly seems a much smaller place for two Marlborough students.
And both Mitchell Avery and Troy Gilmore plan to see more if it when they finish school.
The Marlborough Boys' College students returned from London last month where they rowed down the Thames as part of the Royal Jubilee flotilla.
The 16-year-olds think the trip will leave a mark on their lives.
Year 12 student Mitchell said the experience had changed his outlook on where he might search for work.
Mitchell, who has always wanted to be a train driver, had been bitten by the travel bug.
"I think I'll learn how to drive trains here and then go around the world. It's a job you can get anywhere."
The Blenheim student could see himself driving trains in London or the rest of England.
"It's really pretty there and you get to meet new people," he said. "London is really dominated by trains, both overground and underground."
As a child, Mitchell was fascinated by famous landmarks in Britain and Europe.
"I'd seen Big Ben and Tower Bridge in movies and I always wondered what it would be like to see them first hand, that was an amazing experience. And when you think of places in Europe with their beautiful churches, I bet they are twice as good."
Year 11 student Troy would like to work the mines in Australia and could see himself returning to London some day.
"I want to go back when I'm older and look at what we rowed down," he said. "Maybe I'll take my family and show them all the places we visited."
Two events are being held soon in Blenheim for people to hear first-hand from the boys, their coach and Ron Perano, who built the replica whaling skiff the boys rowed, Swiftsure.
Mitchell said the events were a good way for the boys to meet the people that helped make their dream trip happen.
Marlborough had been extremely supportive in terms of fund raising, he said.
"We were speaking to the other crew [from New Zealand at the jubilee] who were mostly based in Auckland. That's a massive city and they said they couldn't get a penny out of Auckland."
The Marlborough Museum is hosting an afternoon talk on Sunday, July 29. Entry is a gold coin donation.
Blenheim Rotary is hosting a celebration dinner at Drylands Restaurant on Hammerichs Rd on Monday, July 30. Tickets cost $35 per person. All welcome. Contact: Jon Haack, Haack Construction, 03 578 3703 or 027 229 505; Andy Rowe, Cuddon Ltd, 03 578 4299 or 021 842 928 or Peter Chapman, 03 578 8834 or 0275 434 184.
- The Marlborough Express