This is the fourth in a series of diary entries written by University of Arkansas Lady Razorback swimmer Zsuzsa Csobanki from the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, Greece. Csobanki, an incoming senior from Budapest, Hungary, is making her first Olympic appearance for the Hungarian team. This is her experience in her own words.
I was finally able to swim on 20th of August. It was one of my best and most incredible experiences ever. The morning competition started at 10:00 a.m. in Athens. I was surprised because I wasn’t nervous at all. I really wanted to be behind the starting block. I wanted to wave to everybody when the camera man showed my face. I wanted to feel the water and swim in front of thousands of people. And, finally I was there. It was amazing…….
I wrote before I was not nervous at all, I was more exited than anytime before. When I saw those swimmers there my feeling changed totally. I was right next to Inge de Bruin, Theresa Alshamer, or Jenny Thomson…..I started thinking, oh my goodness…..How can I be here.
However, I did not have too much time to think, I was in heat six, land seven. Everything was so fast, I tried to enjoy for every moment, but I felt everything was less two seconds long. I was already at the other side of the pool and touched the wall. I just realized I came here for 27 seconds and it is over. Honestly, I was sad. It is over.
I swam the best morning time I have ever had 27.09, however, it is not my best time. I could come here with 26.47. I was a little bit unhappy, but everybody was nice to me, and told me that I was okay. I swam as fast as I could. And it is good for a morning swim. It is my first Olympic Games and I am so proud.
Everybody from my family wrote me. I get hundreds and hundreds message. It was so nice from everybody who cheered for me. My cell phone just rang and rang. I tried to answer, honestly, I did not even believe that so many people were behind me. Thanks!!!!!!!!
After my swim, I did not do anything. I just ate a big hamburger. I try to enjoy my time here, see other games and cheer for Hungarians and Americans. I’m trying to meet as many people I can and talk with everybody. It is amazing to be in the Olympic Village. Today I will go to see fencing and athletics. I cannot wait. I hope it will be a good day for most of the athletes and I will see good competitions.
Unfortunately, I will go home pretty soon at 25th of August. My family promised me that we will have a big celebration. Probably with a good Hungarian home food…….I love it!!!!!!!!!!