A few years ago, we went to Prague. I found swimming in the open air in November surprisingly – brisk.
Novel, to me, was that were were expected to remove shoes before entering the changing room, and to put them back on only on leaving. Well, we are all entitled to one mistake, especially when all notices are in Czeck. The nice thing was that the pool was built in this way. There were ample benches outside the changing rooms to sit down and do the necessary. It was a lovely complex in any event.
Some time later the new pool opened in Brighouse, and, after several months, a similar policy was introduced, and it now operates similarly throughout Calderdale. There was at first a mixture of puzzlement, annoyance and resistance. I think that now the only real issues are ones of forgetfulness.
What did not happen was it being planned for this. The result is that the swimmers remove their shoes and socks, but are then asked to cross the are walked on by those going to the gym. Not a great thing, but unfortunate.
They do provide an alternative to walking barefoot. That is the provision of blue plastic overshoes. I have never tried them, so do not know but they are, I suppose, sensible perhaps for women (or men!) in tights.
What was amusing was watching one lady who arrived to swim. Took off her shoes and put on her own flip flops – fair enough – but then went on to put her outdoor shoes into the blue overshoes. I confess that it looked silly at the time, but I suppose it might assist keeping other clothes clean when everything gets stuffed in a locker.
The butterfly kick on your back is coming to be – well fundamental. Stick with it. It ain’t easy
gos swim – back dolphin / breast kick drill.
The idea is that the drill gives a bit of leeway – a gentle way into the pain. Try it.
So you thought you had seen everything silly in swimming?
Try this (from the good people at goswim.tv) – Overhead Sculling.
Why? It is possible to swim and get somewhere but still to wonder why others go faster. One good reason is that we feel we are connecting with the water, though in reality we are windmilling. This drill will really test your connection with the water and isolate the hand movements necessary to make progress.
Take the invitation to use a pull buoy seriously.
several full moons ago . . that may suggest the intellectual merit of what follows . .
. . it was briefly thought that Calderdale were out to get, or had it in for, the runners of Calderdale. When they so kindly supported the provision of the running track on Huddersfield Road, two councillors commented. One suggested that this was kind to local joggers, who would not now have to run the streets and hills of Halifax. Another suggested, obliquely perhaps, that this might help tidy unappealing displays of distressed lycra from the streets.
Clearly it did not work. the track is used – but the club of determined street trawlers has gone ever onwards and upwards. Stainland Lions is bigger than it ever was, and the lycra leaves even less to the horrified imagination of the passing councillors.
So, the track failed to get us off the streets. Whatever next? Well, we are an environmental problem – our carbon footprint is exceeded only by our sweaty footprint. So Calderdale came up with the Wheelie Bin . .
I was stood in a queue of one the other day at a Calderdale Payments office. I was hoping to get to the front in time to pay my parking fine before it doubled – and there were only two days left. I listened to a _very_ patient cash clerk listen to an elderly lady who was making it quite clear, and at very considerable length just how pernicious are the new wheelie bins recently visited on us.
My mind does not stand idly by, and I soon began to work out that in fact Calderdale’s plan is to litter the pavements of Halifax with dark wheelie bins. These buggers will be left unannounced, and unlit, outside people’s houses over the dark winters ahead of us. We will run into them. We will fall over them, and we will roll about in the smelly stinky contents. Our lycra will be even more distressed.
The true depths of Calderdale’s evil cunning can be seen by the additional provision of even less visible, even smaller and even smellier ‘caddies’ whose sole purpose in life can only be to trip up the smaller (and often smellier) runner. These caddies will contain the rotting meat and two veg of the citizens of Halifax. They will be left out on the pavement purely in the hope of catching out the distracted runner.
From next winter, to the cries of ‘Car’ and ‘Bloody Big Puddle’ will be added the warnings of ‘Waiting Wheelie Bin’ and ‘Caddie Trap’.
Heaven help us all. I wonder if this will be covered in the Jog Leader’s course?
Your editor has also received the following correspondence:
1. (From Creative of Copley)
Do you think that Calderdale have missed a trick here? It is said that only emptying the bins every two weeks will encourage rats. What they could have done is to make a small compartment at the bottom of the bin, which would operate as a rat trap. Holes in the bin above could allow odours, attractive to rats no doubt, to entice any passing little so-and-sos (and the bigger so-and-sos as well) in to be caught. They could then be collected with the rest of the rubbish in special compartments for the purpose on the vans.
This would answer Calderdale’s critics. If rats are encouraged, they will be caught, and if none are caught that would prove that they were not being encouraged.
For squeamish residents unwilling to see a rat starve to death over two weeks, a special attachment could be provided to feed any rats caught from the scraps caddie. It would also provide a delight in watching the trauma induced in animal-loving-green type people. Good for the environment all around.
I had also heard that a plan had been got together by a certain H h h Harriers running club to sabotage the wheelie bin system by knocking them all over as they ran the streets. “Not on your Nellie” will be their answer if this might release several bad tempered and hungry rats about their feet.
2. (From Worried of Warley)
May I share my idea with other residents concerned at the possible untidiness to be inflicted on us by Calderdale in the shape of the wheelie bin. As soon as I mine arrived, I placed it and my neighbour’s bins together in a small corner at the foot of our garden. In order to stop them being stolen by nasty neighbours, knocked over by any passing joggers, or becoming a place of solace for any rat colony, I immediately built a small wall approximately two feet high all around them. It looks very nice, and the bin men will still be able to get to our black bags.
PS What are the wheels for?