The pond is getting busier – even though it’s too cold to stay terribly long in the water, the changing rooms are crowded. Of course it’s lots of the same faces each time and quite possibly most of them would not be put off by icy conditions, but it does feel like the milder weather has brought more swimmers out.
By contrast, my indoor pools have seen a marked drop-off in business. Monday evenings are still pretty busy at Kentish Town, but neither it nor the Oasis are as busy as they were in January. I’m not certain if it’s just new year resolutions falling by the wayside though as there are a lot of runners about. I wonder if milder, wetter weather is actually more off-putting than the colder weather we had in January to swimmers. Sometimes I feel ‘I’m wet enough’ on a grey day and can’t really face struggling out of wet clothes which will be nice and chilly when I put them back on again. I’m not complaining of course, I’ve swum in some nearly empty lanes at Kentish Town, which has been lovely. And I do feel like a deserve a medal when I’m home and dry.
On Sunday I went to London Fields Lido and experienced a life-enhancing demonstration of honesty from its female users. Having got a bit annoyed that everybody was using the lockers without paying for them (I realise that the same number of lockers would be available, but I wouldn’t have spent 5 minutes shivering by the pool in my scanties opening up lockers that had keys in them still) I spent my 20p absolutely pointlessly because I left my handbag in the changing room. A certain amount stokey saturday night-induced scattiness meant that while I’d bothered to lock my stuff up and swim with a plastic bracelet on my arm, my handbag was sitting the whole time for the plucking on the bench. And there it remained, because the mean streets of hackney apparently attract more honest folk than NHS sports and social clubs. Nothing was taken from it (not even my ibuprofen, thank goodness). What good eggs they are!
Actually, someone took my goggles while I was in the shower, but I can only assume that was a mistake…