|shorts: laura ashley|
|swimmer print blouse: h! at henry holland|
|cardigan: new look|
|raincoat: h+m // cat bag: matalan|
When I first saw the print of this H! Henry Holland blouse, I knew I would have to add it to my wardrobe before long, given my love of all things swim recently.
Well, actually, whilst I do love going swimming, there are a number of things about it which really get my goat. Hold on to your hats, I feel a bit of a rant coming on:
I get into the changing room sometimes and am greeted by (by which I mean I see, not that she speaks to me) a woman who is clearly very comfortable in her own skin. She's more often than not mid-conversation, which means that all thoughts of covering herself up have clearly gone out of the window. I mean, I'm all for body confidence, I'd love some more myself, but I would also love to be able to make my way to the cubicle without having to dodge out of the way of low-flying boobs, because she's making some animated arm gestures. Ack.
Then, once I've made it into the pool, past obstacles such as very small children (who for some reason all seem to be named Tarquin or Oscar), crawling in and out and underneath your cubicle partitions (whose mothers apparently can't read the sign which says "Please use the family changing room if you have young children with you."), or that annoying moment when you get into an apparently vacated cubicle to be greeted by the bombsite remains of someone else's clothing, even though said person can not easily be located, which would suggest they've just moved in to the cubicle and left their stuff in your way as a way of marking their territory, I finally make it into the pool.
There are several pools where I swim, one of which is predominantly used for swimming lessons at the kind of time I am there. Fair enough. There is another, which is the kids' pool, which leaves one for general swimming. If it's a lucky day, there will be plenty of space, people will be swimming in lengths, and there will be no kids trying to dive in at the end. More often than not, it's not a lucky day.
So, I've navigated my way into the pool, past the couple of women who are bobbing around in the shallow end chatting (um, get in the jacuzzi?! or the bar for that matter?!), and the kids who are having splashing contests (again, what's wrong with the childrens' pool?), I set about starting my lengths. I try to swim at least 100 each time I go, which can be sort of boring, so I sometimes change the way I count them, just to keep things exciting. (i.e. sometimes I'll count up to 50, then back down to zero - it seems to be the most effective way of tricking myself into getting them done quicker. The worst method has to be 4 lots of 25. That was a long day).
If it's a really lucky day, I'll manage to get past the 50-length mark before there's any sign of The Whale. I can be the only person in the pool (rare, but it sometimes happens) and yet The Whale will still get in and sidle up to an uncomfortable closeness and begin the splashiest swim I've ever known. He seems to put his feet together and use them as a tail fin, which I believe is probably dolphin stroke, but aesthetically, he's more of a whale. So that's annoying.
Worse luck, and The Hippo gets in. Or more, flops her way in. This is a rather large lady, who seems to do a wallowing lazy backstroke, at rather a slow pace after the initial speed in which she gets in, and if there isn't any space, swims her way in front of you. Gaah.
Other regulars include: The Black Mollie, so-called because of her bug-eyes. She's one for getting in, speeding up and swimming right in front of you, even if you've been doing your lengths in the same place for the last 50 or so; The Walrus, named mainly as a result of his facial hair. He doesn't affect you much, but I make a mental note to try and avoid catching sight of his teeny-tiny trunks, almost invisible under his overhanging mid-secion, as that can put you off your counting; and The Penguin, a strange creature who brings his towel with him to the poolside as though in some kind of seaside resort, and flips his way to the edge of the pool in his flip-flops, so as to make sure his feet don't come into contact with the surrounding tiles.
The only good point about watching all of the regulars when I'm in the pool, I suppose, is that it gives me something to take my mind off all the boring counting.