Monday, April 21, 2008

Polly Swims!

Well, after a few days away; here I am! Back again, despite all efforts to the contrary!

In case anyone was wondering where I’d disappeared to; I have recently taken to trawling the depths of The Grand Canal, just outside Tullamore, Co Offaly.

My brief incursions were very refreshing – after the initial fright; due to my insistence on entering the water head first while strapped firmly into an orange and yellow fibreglass hull. The waters are so much cleaner than I ever envisaged and very, very cold; especially as it trickled between my breasts and into the bra line.

I discovered very quickly that it’s not a good idea to scream under water; the lungs tend to fill very quickly. So, I shut my mouth and opened my eyes; realising very quickly that I would panic unless able to free my legs.

It’s amazing just how quickly all these processes occur; quite literally, in a fraction of a second. One amateur tug on the Jesus cord and somehow I was swimming away from the capsized Kayak; much to my own relief and that of the two instructors’.

The air filled with triumphant screams of laughter as the boy’s jeered their sopping wet leader! They’re good lads really; only one realised the true impact of what they’d just witnessed. Still, they had a good laugh; and a better one still as I repeated my efforts a little later on…

Despite the weather conditions, ie typical Irish April afternoon, dull, cool and cloudy we had a great time. From the traditional Irish breakfast served early in the Den; to the hot showers that heralded the end of our adventure, the prevailing humour was good.

The previous day; had been much colder, accompanied by a biting wind which proved to be much more of a challenge for the boys. Just keeping warm on the water proved too much for most; who after our picnic lunch excused themselves and took refuge in my Nissan Micra.

I can report that only one returned to the water, and braved the short excursion up the canal; my eldest son BB. As I proudly waved him off; I remarked that his endurance was due to his good stock and a love of water fowl.

Goose fat is used by endurance swimmers; they smear it all over their bodies to protect their skin from the biting effects of the cold sea water. This tough little guy gets it every Sunday; his potatoes are cooked in it!

For those intrepid explorer’s amongst you; why not check out The Tullamore Canoe Club website for details. Maybe next time I decide to go for a swim in the canal you will be sitting there laughing too…


Jean said...

Well, I'm glad you're back. I've missed reading your antics! Glad you've got some more to report.

Polly Peirce said...

Last week was just crazy! I don't really know what happened or when; it just seemed to disappear...