I like to swim. And when I say “swim” I mean splash around in a pool, gradually drifting from one end to the other maybe. I’m not much for laps. I just like being in the water.
Last time I went swimming was in Vegas in 2013. I’ve wanted to swim since, but the two big swimming places here in Basingstoke are… well they’re big. There’s the sports centre in the middle of town, and then a big lido water place in the leisure park. Both have a lot of foot traffic, and that means subjecting myself to teenagers and hassle and comments and things. It put me off.
So when an opportunity for something more private arrived in June, I took it – even though I had no idea where my swimsuit was at the time.
There’s an Apollo Hotel near where my Mum lives, and near where I live now. And it has a private gym. In June they were doing a special offer. If you purchased a six month swim-only membership, you got six months free. I knew that my swimsuit was in one of my boxes, and I knew that I’d be unpacking those boxes in a month or maybe two. So I would still get several months free.
And so I bought that membership at the end of June. Swim only, unlimited between 8am and 5pm on Monday to Friday, for 12 months. And then I moved, and my boxes were being moved and rearranged and sorted. And I couldn’t find my swimsuit. And I began to worry a little. But then it appeared!
I prepared my swimming bag – towel, hairbrush, £1 for the locker, drink, snack etc etc etc. And then I determined to go swimming.
But then the depression kicked in a little. You can’t just decide to go somewhere new! How dare you? Don’t you know you need to panic and stress about it first? And put it off several times?
This week though I managed to overcome that. I worked out what time the bus was, I picked up my swimming bag, and I stepped outside. And then I told myself that I really should look out of a window before I leave the house. It was raining. Heavily. Very heavily. But to be honest, that wouldn’t have put me off. I LOVE that sort of rain. But by the time I got to the bus stop I looked like I’d dived into the pool fully clothed.
Note to self – dry clothes in swimming bag.
I wasn’t expecting the changing room to be an open one though – I’m used to cubicles. That might take some getting used to.
Note to self – put swimsuit on before leaving house.
But the pool is lovely. It’s not standard size – about 12.5 x 6m. 1.2m deep – no deep end or shallow end. But it’s not busy either, which is perfect for me.
There was no mood lighting, and that waterfall thing wasn’t switched on (pictures from hotel website), although I now know what that weird shelf thing was for. But it was lovely and warm.
There’s a sauna and a steam room – which I have no intention of ever using. And a jacuzzi too, which was quite nice. It had bubble bath type stuff in it.
I was there for about 90 minutes. Splashing around. Floating. The occasional bit of swimming.
Oh, and I may have fallen in love. There was a swim coach there, giving a lesson to a little deaf/blind girl. And he was gorgeous! Looks a little like Rory Pond/Williams. After his lesson we got chatting. He is funny and smart, and kind and warm. You could see he loves his job, and he was really good with the little girl, and the other kid he gave a lesson to while I was there. I didn’t get a name though.
He mentioned that he does lessons at that pool between 2 and 6pm Mondays and Thursdays. I think I may have figured out how regularly I’ll be going swimming. He was very nice. And watching him get out of the pool wasn’t a horrible experience either, with the trunks and the wet white tshirt and the exposed strip of belly and…
SWIMMING! Anyway. I had a great time – even without the swimming Rory. I’m glad I bought the yearly pass. I’ll definitely be making use of it 🙂