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Life with Lavendar in London town

Friday, 1 May 2009

Like A Fish to Water

In Australia I am a below average swimmer. I would swim but I was never one of those strong, sleek bodies that charged through the water doing lap after steady lap. In Oz I always swam in the Slow or Medium lane. I would never have dared dipped my toe in the Fast.

When I moved to London I stopped swimming. Having been spolit by Perths' open air, salt walter pools, I could not bring myself to become enthusiastic about swimming indoors in a heavily chlorinated, 25 metre urinal.



After a few years of non-swimming, I got free membership to one of London's best gyms. The pool in this gym was decent by London standards. It was still indoors and 25m but it looked clean. The husband said:

No excuses now. You can start swimming again.

But I didn't. By now I hadn't swum for years and was out of the habit until.....

the Paris Half Marathon.

Training for the half marathon forced me into the water again. I knew I needed to incorporate some cardio exercise that would not put weight on my joints. So I dived in and to my surprise I discovered that not only could I still swim, I wasn't bad at all. In fact, I was pretty damn good.

What happened? Three years of not swimming and in the first lap I become Esther Williams? Something's wrong.



I looked around and slowly the light went on.

I was in London.

A city of BAD swimmers.

As a general rule, Londoners are not great swimmers. It's not a part of their upbringing like it is for Aussies. They try, bless them and it's not their fault. They don't have the sea and lovely pools like us.

Still, this makes me feel great. I did nothing and became an above average swimmer. Over here I even swim in the Fast lane.

It doesn't get any easier than that.

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