Skip to main content

An odd sense of humour and swimming all the way to Calais

An indicator perhaps of my odd sense of humour, this footpath sign always makes me smile -

Choices - path to left or right. Or straight to heaven.

... Yes - I know the 'up' is meant to indicate straight ahead, but that's not what I see, or think, when I walk by. Which I do frequently. Is 'walking on by' another way for a procrastinator to plough ahead - safer walking the worn path of blind-faith-in-sameness: same avoidance of decisions, same putting everything off, same not straying to embark on a new path in case that new path disappoints or throws up new challenges which would then have to be avoided, buried, and lost in the mountainous to-do-pile. Hmmm - this procrastinator is going to change. The list of jobs is too long to ignore, the consequences too hard to bear, and the fear of failure diminished a little, by some hopefully not too transient positive thinking.

I spent this morning explaining positive thinking to Littlest who styles herself "the worst swimmer in the school." And ...

Huh! This procrastinator has not veered off the path of putting-EVERYTHING-off-until-I-don't-know ... tomorrow? Tomorrow seems so soon! The above was started three - yes! THREE! - days ago. And not finished. Looked at. Read. Mulled over. Several times. But not finished. No effort expended whatsoever in straying off the procrastinating path into a fresh territory called the land of getting-things-done.

Huh! Indeed.

Where was I before I interrupted myself?

Littlest. And swimming ...

She has worried all week about her swim-a-thon event this afternoon. Her league at school were due to swim to raise money for charity and some of her friends had gathered sponsorship for "lots of lengths". For her, it would be an achievement to swim two. The shame! She wondered if she might be able to have the day off school - perhaps suffering from swimming-pool-itis. She's not called Littlest for nothing. And when little, it is hard to swim as fast or as strong as your peers.

Swimming-pool-itis being a 'disease' absent from ICD-10, the current international classification of disease, we didn't feel able to cite it as a valid excuse for missing school, so we duly sponsored her - an amount of money to be paid, regardless of number of lengths, if she swam at all.

She seemed happy with this. Until she read the blurb on the sponsorship sheet. Her league intended to swim 'from Dover to Calais, about 22 miles.' And she went to bed muttering "I can't do that" and dreaming of being tossed into the English Channel and being told to 'swim for France.'

She came home this evening, a very happy and unusually assertive bunny ... or fish, having just swum twenty-two lengths of the school pool!!
Aren't we relieved that we didn't sponsor her per length!!!


Popular posts from this blog

#2019 Connections, characters and a stone ball.

Half-way into January. A small step into a new year. And I am another year older. How did this happen?

I could answer part of that by reminding myself that as I was born in January and have just had a birthday I am a year older. But half-way into January (over half-way now - several days have passed since I started this blog) and a small step into a New Year; how did these happen?

Time doesn’t stand still. I've said that before. In November's blog. I called it out as a cliche then too. It is. But if cliches can be good and I think this is a good one. Time is animated. Time moves. I wittered on about this at length. In November. Two months ago. Two months filled with frantic present hunting; over-eating; over-spending; under-sleeping; and wrapping (always late on Christmas eve - so late that I risk Father Christmas finding me sitting on the floor surrounded by paper and string - the sellotape always runs out at about 11.57pm on Christmas Eve, doesn't it? - hot chocolate insul…

On finding paddles and taking a long procrasti-ramble up an idiom

Lord Byron - that maverick, troubled thinker and poet - said

If I do not write to empty my mind, I go mad
I haven't written for a while. Perhaps I have gone mad.

Indeed, perhaps I have ...

Perhaps the whimsy that is the word jumble in my head resides in Aristophanes's cloud-cuckoo land. Either there, or perhaps it has flown away with the Celtic fairies of my youth. Don't you just love a good idiom?

Idiom - derivation: probably from the Greek idioma meaning private or peculiar phraseology (ref. Oxford Dictionaries online); definition: a group of words that when presented in a particular order take on a meaning that is not obvious from the meanings of the individual words eg. over the moon, on the ball, piece of cake, hit the sack, let the cat out of the bag, and method in my madness ... which there is. But mine is innocent; not the murderous method of Hamlet's madness. And if you'll give me the benefit of the doubt, I'll cut to the chase and deliver the goods as …

Life in a time of covid-19 - part 11: earth day and apples

I have posted an i-phone photograph of the sunrise, on Instagram, every morning, for the past 22 days. And I am exhausted. But not so exhausted that I am tempted to stop. Not yet. Small things give purpose to the day. Particularly, when day after day we are in lockdown and the world looks more different than we could ever have imagined. There is something anchoring in seeing the sunrise. Maybe, it harks back to a deeply-rooted instinct that looks to the sun for reassurance. Maybe, it is my way of finding a constant - if the sun rises then I can too. I can begin my day.

The coronavirus has altered the world we live in, but the earth hasn't changed. Or has it?

Arguably, the earth has changed -
Across the industrialised world, industry has shut down and commuting to work has all but ceased. As a result, pollution levels have collapsed. The WHO estimates that the smog caused by air pollution kills over 1.5 million people a year in India. Now the air is so clear that the Himalayas can …