Thursday, 2 February 2012

Inward Smile Goes A Long Way

Again no visible ice on cars or Tooting Common ... but a bitter, bitter icy cold wind greeted me on my cycle ride to the Lido. Dylan was bravely fighting off the wind. Stephanie came out of the sauna after having swam 4 lengths ... she did warm up nicely but "only" dipped back in the water - no desire for a dive this morning! Digesting all this information, I was carefully weighing up my option ... would I be able to stick at 2 lengths? what was Vince going to do - "2 he proclaimed!" oh my God was I going to be able to follow suit? Not sure yet ... I asked Steph who by now told me that she wanted to stick to 5 lengths but had to get out after 4! Oh maybe I should do 1 then?! That was before Sue came along and said in no uncertain terms : "Elizabeth, you swam 2 yesterday, you can swim 2 today!" Ohh really, I thought! Well if I decided to do that, at least it meant I didn't have to run up to the deep end on the icy concrete, dive in and swim in the direction of my flip flops ... and the sauna!
OK let's do it! As I pushed off I immediately felt that the water was MUCH colder than yesterday. But, committed I was, so I kept going - lengths 1 was lovely .. well, the first 2 thirds of the length were! My hands were getting more painful with each stroke... my body was as warm as ever, nor did my feet suffer too badly. So I just carried on ... I pushed off from the deep end and just kept my focus on swimming and trying to relax instead of letting my mind drift towards the pain my hands were going through.
Out of the corner of my eye I saw Steph cheering me on as I passed the half way mark. Sue joined in - it did bring out a smile in me ... well, I could hardly muster a smile as my mouth felt really strange .. almost numb ... a similar sensation to when a dentist gives you pain numbing injection and you lose the feeling in your lips ... ! nevertheless, my inward smile had just as good an effect and got me home ... safely! Thanx for that, ladies!

Before you think I'm mad ... Tricky swam 4 lengths, Alex swam 4 and quite a few, including Sue and Chris swam 2 lengths too (and suffered!) .. Also, they do have more flesh on them :)

The best bit was yet to come on this gloriously sunny morning: Batch's Birthday Breakfast Bash!

Dylan "trying" hard to keep warm under Sue B's handmade
(and very bright!) Lifeguard's cape

"It's just that my face still gets a (hell of a) beating from this icy wind"

Batch, the Birthday Kid (on the block!) arriving with some of the goodies for his Breakfast Birthday Bash!

Icicles forming on the steps into the shallow end of the pool

even the fountain seized up

forming a beautiful icicle

Karen's turn to sit on the Lifeguards lookout

now that the sun has risen above the tree line
she may very well be more protected

Ian braving a splish after the sauna

Pip trying out his weblike gloves

Pip contemplating his options
he came a bit later and had to brave the elements on his own

yes, Pip this is ice you see before your eyes!

before Pip (eventually got in) David took the temperature : 1C
... really!

here take a closer look!

ok, after that reassurance g having read the thermometer
Pip was ready to push off with his weblike gloves ...
wonder whether wearing them made any difference?

Mandy setting off on a couple of widths with a big leg kick

time to go over to the caf for Batch's Breakfast Birthday Celebration

The Birthday Kid was already tucking in

Pip placing her order ...
just in case all the goodies had disappeared by the time she got dressed

"Tall Chris" on a flying visit to wish Batch a happy birthday and join in the feast

scrambled eggs (and salmon!) chef Chris tucking in

a closer look at all the Birthday cards
(and hugely welcomed single malt whisky courtesy of absent Nando!)

This is a print from a painting of the Lido by ...
please someone remind me of the artist's name!?!

the only time Nick is happy for me to take a picture of "him"! :)
well in this case a photo of his "injured leg" acquired this morning while playing hand tennis with Jonathan

Bob approaching the ice covered steps and ice floor

sheer ice formed very quickly by the steps from people coming out of the pool


  1. Yikes - I'm not sure how much I'm looking forward to Saturday! Not been in since Monday :(
    Happy Birthday Batch!

  2. Lovely pix, Elizabeth. The lido artist is Lucinda Denning.

  3. ah yes, great Clare- thanx for that!