Thursday, 22 December 2011

Merry Xmas

I managed to get a quick swim in before heading back home for breakfast ... and a great coffee (of course!) followed by racing off to Heathrow - to catch a flight bound for Vienna, Austria
which leaves me just enough time to wish you all:

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Mixed Message

No Mr Bubbles this morning ... in fact when I arrived around 8am there was not a soul to be seen... it was dark, misty and in need of some human injection .. maybe Alex had "another" Xmas party to go to last night?! or is he still hung over from Xmas party no 3?!

After strolling around taking little shots here, there and everywhere ... the usual morning swimmers started trickling in ... Mr & Mrs Ape, Sue, Vince, Nicky (who must have bee hiding in the sauna!) Gail & Wendy, Chris ... Stephanie and Claire also appeared from somewhere .. ahhh yes, the sauna ... which incidentally, got a thorough clean this morning : thank you Simon! - he even cleaned it in his swimming trunks - door firmly shut, without asking for it to be turned off which meant that all the heat was retained!

dark and misty Lido this morning ... someone please turn the lighst on!

keeping each other warm ..
mind you the air temperature was much milder today!

someone even thought of leaving his/her woolly hat behind ...

abandoned or/and redundant ?!

ahhhh, finally signs of a swimmer

Stephanie's friend and SLSC member Claire now lives in Cardiff where
she doesn't get much opportunity to swim ..
well, not in a pool as fantastic (nor as chilly!) as the Lido ...!
She is spending a few days "down south" and simply had to remind herself (and her body!) of what cold water swimming is all about!

Mixed message!
only 4 days to go and Vince decorated "His cubicle"
and yet ... it was warm enough for an ice cream :)

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Xmas Is Upon Us

After nurturing my cold all day yesterday, and feeling a bit better today, I simply had to be back at the Lido this morning - no frost, no parts of the Lido iced over, no dramatic sun rise.... but a rising sun all the same and what a welcomed treat that is!

Xmas theme was dotted around the pool - a sure sign that it's not long now before Xmas is truly upon us - only 5 more days to go .... hard to believe!
With my cold having moved from the throat to the nose and forehead I did the wise thing (or should I say the "less fooling" thing) and swam a couple of widths rather than sticking to lengths for the first time this season ... concentrating on not putting my head too deep in the water was strenuous and took away from the usual pleasure of swimming ... but swim I did!

same door as last year
same snowman as last year!

more Xmas decoration in the caf

keeping warm is the name of the game

Fred hesitating ever so slightly!
he hadn't been to the Lido since last thursday and was feeling the sharp drop
in temperature!

While Alex, brave as ever swam 4 lengths which, so he says,
helped him get over a slight hang over ...
Xmas party no 3 for Alex and "this one was the best one!"

Martin and his daughter Natalija arriving,
watched by Chris

Sue leisurely swimming a width head up breaststroke (flip flop in her hands)
after her post sauna plunge -
Chris and Sue swam 4 lengths before finding refuge in the sauna

Martin's daughter Natalija hurrying across the width of the pool ...

... and back - well done Natalija!

Monday, 19 December 2011

No Show

Sorry to have missed the first ice on the water this morning ... must have been great! Water down to 2.5C according to Carl - check out his post. A sore throat meant that I chose to do some inhaling rather than coming to the pool ... hopefully a wise choice that will speed up the process and allow me back tomorrow morning ...!

I still got up early and captured the wonderful winter sky ...

... out of my office window

I waited all day to see whether Alex will post a blog entry today - he finally did - great shots - well worth the wait!

Saturday, 17 December 2011

Thanx To Stephanie

For fear of "having" to repeat myself, I simply have to proclaim: "What an amazing morning!"
Not only because of the irresistible beauty that surrounds the Lido: frost, sun, gorgeous light and magical atmosphere ... it was amazing (to me) thanks to Stephanie's encouraging words which challenged me to keep my swim at 2 lengths in 38F which is 3.3C! Probably a PB (personal best) for me in that water temperature.

Batch setting off with an inspired goal
of swimming 4 lengths

Gail getting warm after her swim

2 Birthdays are coming up ...
happy Birthday Sangeeta and Nicky!

Lifeguard, Fin with the right idea...

... Hot drinks and biscuits!

From one attire to another

Batch cut his intention short ...

... and got out after 2 lengths ....
but he did get in a few more times after stints in the sauna!

ice was forming as swimmers were coming our of the pool...

and leaving an ice trail

at around 9am the sun was catching the metal
flags of the "summer entrance"

more traces of frost

lonesome, abandoned and forgotten neoprene boot ...
which begs the question, why did the owner use them in the first place ..?! :)

high as a kite

Alison and Stephanie having a leisurely chat ... Alison hadn't been in yet .. whereas Stephanie had already swam 4 lengths and was coming out of the sauna ...

Alison, gingerly, making her way into the water
amidst a thin layer of ice on the handlebars and top step

and off on 2 lengths ...
I love the thickness of the water in this shot -
looks like Alison really has to push hard to get the water in front
of her over the black line ...

Stephanie, steaming hot after the sauna
was ready perform a beautiful dive !

no cap ...! but she re surfaced feeling a whole lot better for it!
bearing the biggest smile (ever!) she said:
"I feel like a three year old whenever I come to the Lido."

under water mission

Alison on her way back .... and out
unusual for her to "only" swim 2 lengths ....!
which I interpreted as a measure of caution for myself !
How many was I going to swim, if Alison swims 2, Stephanie 4 and Batch 2?

Stephanie showered and dressed (and still bearing a big smile!) said, without a trace of any after thoughts :
"You can do 2 Elizabeth!"

Ohhhh, can I? ok then ... 2 it was!

Does anybody recognise the Lido Geisha?!

Friday, 16 December 2011

Perfect Day

Rain, sleet, snow, a punctured front (bicycle) tire, water temperature of 39F/ 3.8 C, 2 lengths of the Lido, 20 minutes in the sauna ... a dive and a width, a shower = the day couldn't have started any better!

And it continued in the same vein: a neighbour popped by for a bit of TLC and I was able to offer him an espresso, made from freshly ground "Organic Monmouth Espresso blend" beans! I kept him company with another shot which I made into a delicious latte!

It was so dark at the Lido this morning when I arrived
that I quickly put on the flash to catch Stephanie jumping back in after her sauna

Once she resurfaced she quickly ran to get her towel.
"The air temperature (1C) was colder than the water this morning!", she told me

Vince was sheltering in his cubicle,
deciding when to launch his attack (on the water)

still no movement, and all smiles

this one's a bit fuzzy ..
but I like the mischievous look on Vince's face!
he had just asked me: "are we racing this morning?"
"noooooo, I'll try and relax..!"

speaking of racing ...
still in my cubicle, I caught Alex speeding off at the speed of light!

and ploughing through thick water after his tumble turn.
I think he took some photos too after his swim .. better check out his blog later

After his and my 2 lengths,
Vince added on another 3 widths
one can almost "see and feel" the cold water in this photo!?!
or is it just my memory of this morning's experience flooding back into my bones (and eyes)

David checked the water temperature as he always does -
Although one can't really see the mercury in this shot ... he told me that it showed 39F...
who am I to argue with "Mr Thermometer" himself!