A weekend off from football. My football posts will be back on Monday, and will be more than a rant, I promise. But ’tis the weekend, and I thought we could all do with a break. So, I give you…. My swim at Heron Lake!

Actually, it’s both slightly more exciting and slightly less exciting than it sounds. Exciting because a new (to me) outdoor swimming venue half an hour (at the time you have to leave to get there) from my house, where you can swim in a gorgeous clear lake with like-minded people and enjoy an excellent coffee and a proper egg sandwich afterwards – Yowsa! Nowhere will ever replace Tooting Lido in my affections, but it has to be said that at the moment she is not at her best, being filled with *delicate shudder* public from morning to night, who leave our crystal water fogged with suncream and the bottom of the pool roiling with a nauseating mix of plasters, hair-ties and hairballs large enough to hide a small child. Also, there are swimmers everywhere, so lengths become an obstacle course and a long swim has something of the stress of the morning commute where a large part of one’s energy is devoted to simply carving out some space for oneself amidst the crowds. Still lovely, but maybe not at present for long swims.

Less exciting because… Well, nothing really happened, it was just a lovely swim. Water like silk, which at 23° was almost uncomfortably warm. Clear, like swimming in Coke, with the weeds on the bottom visible and the occasional convoy of ducks to keep one company. (Swans too, but having read a fellow-swimmer’s blog post about falling foul of a swan named Asbo, I gave the swan family a bit of a wide berth. I think they must have been very middle-class swans, though, because Mum, Dad and four cygnets all studiously ignored me in an “It’s just a swimmer, dear, pay no attention” sort of way.)

So easy to swim, too! Off the ramp and then round the 1.1km course, buoy to buoy, few swimmers at first then a few more, but all going in the same direction and it’s a largish lake so there was no crush. Nobody coming fast in the opposite direction, no fear that as you get into your rhythm with your head down, someone will crash into you. Long easy strokes, long easy stretches where all there is to do is swim, sighting the next buoy every now and again and watching the trees on the bank move past. Beautiful. And afterwards, an excellent latte and one of the best egg sandwiches I’ve ever had (it had all the right ingredients – thick sliced white bread, a generous buttering of the cheapest sort of margarine and two eggs perfectly fried until the whites are set and the yolks still runny – yum!!) And eaten sitting looking out over the lake watching the few swimmers still out.

Plus, painful as it was to get up at 4.30 am, for the lake opens at 6 and you must be off site by 10 (normally 9, but they have extended opening hours at present), I was back and ready for my day by 10am, boosted by a huge feeling of virtue.  What’s not to like?

Some more haiku tomorrow, I think.