Daughter At Swimming Gala
So after this afternoon’s cycling around Newcastle, it was time for Daughter’s Rainbow’s Swimming Gala. Lots of six year-olds racing across the small pool at Tynemouth Baths, with screaming & cheering from lots of other six year-olds.
I was really quite nervous about this - Daughter’s only just learned to swim, and is still rather prone to sinking when on her front - though she can go for ages on her back. The race she was entered into was a ‘freestyle’ event, which kinda implied “swim on your front”.
Seeing the race before hers didn’t help - some of these kids’ strokes would definitely put me to shame. So I’d started rehearsing various conversations in my head:
“It’s the taking part that counts”
“They’re probably older than you anyway”
“Yes, but remember that I was almost last on the swim at the Hartlepool Marina Triathlon”
Anyway, the whistle blew to start her race . . . and I couldn’t believe my eyes - a perfect long-bodied, arms in front, head down, streamlined push off from the side, followed by arms going over the top, and feet like propellers. At the half way point, she was in SECOND place.
Then she had to look up to breathe, and started doggy-paddling, dropping to third. But she’d seen that she’d been overtaken . . . and put her face back in the water and started to work those arms again . . . catching up with the second placed girl . . . pulling level . . . and finally touching the far side of the pool no more than two inches ahead to get second place!
The crowd went wild. Well, both Wife and I did anyway.