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The Thrill (and Agony) of Winter at Columbia
Jill Mitchell, Alum
Columbia College 1987

As a member of the Women's Swim Team at Columbia from 1983-1987, I vividly recall both the thrill and agony of the arrival of wind, snow and ice on the CU campus.

In order to make it to 6 a.m. practices in the Dodge Athletic Center, we had to peel off our warm blankets and comforters and exchange them for winter coats and boots so we could make the long trek across campus from the dorms to the pool. It always felt like a death march on those cold, frosty mornings because during the long walk through the wind tunnel that leads to Dodge, we only had one thing to look forward to - a dive into the cold water of Uris Pool. For us, this was the agony of being a CU Swimmer in Winter.

The thrill, however, arrived after Saturday morning practices when the whole team trudged back across the snow to John Jay for a leisurely breakfast of warm waffles, hot coffee and long talks at the dining tables surrounded by all my best friends. We spent so many mornings just watching the snow fall outside the dining hall windows while we shared our stories about life at CU. And we were thankful we had a full weekend ahead of us before we returned to the pool on our Monday morning death march again.

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