Swimming with the Swans

Julia Chi Taylor

Anadi and I were walking in Hyde Park today, when I requested we walk past the swimmers in the Serpentine Lido

I wanted to reccy the swimming club…

It looked fun, some brave souls with colourful swimming hats were doing lengths – long ones – the ‘pool stretches 100 metres!

Two men on a bench – one who already had swum, the other not quite begun – encouraged me to join the club! ‘Members get twenty percent percent off in the coffee shop…’

They had me sold…


Mary, a cheery elder, in a bright blue costume emerged from the water

‘You’re an inspiration’ I remarked to the tiny lady.

‘If I can do it anyone can’ she affirmed…

Anadi and I wandered off,  and I laughed… ‘Thats not entirely true…Some people can do things others can’t!’

I was thinking back to becoming nearly hypothermic once in Greece – in quite temperate May waters – and managing approximately a minute of immersion in December seas in Spain before a full freeze occurred… ( Of me! Not the sea!)

This was in winter waters – warmer by far than here…

We are all different – and although being inspired by one another to stretch our own limits is one of the joys of humankind – it is also important that to our own selves we are true.

I can see that I might buy all the kit…

A dry robe, a swimming hat! And then stand shivering on the edge before eventually going for the coffee without the swim!

Or I’ll be a swimmer whose swimming session is a cold plunge pool and out!

Or I will write this blog in December – and my first swim will be in June!

We will see

But I loved my reccy this morning

Watching intrepid winter souls swimming with the swans!