We’ve been travelling A LONG way to get decent swimming lessons so I was interested to see that the school is now offering weekly sessions.
Swimming is one of my favourite things in the world. However, indoor pools are not. Dirty changing rooms, shouting teachers, boiling hot pools – I try so hard to keep my dislike under my hat so as not to put small son off.
Job one was to put small son’s name onto his towel, swimming costume and goggles. I got out the needle and thread, sat down with an old towel and discovered that someone had got there first. My mum had already sewn my name onto the towel. Near enough, that’ll do. Then I replied to the school that I would help the children get back onto the coach after the lesson. I tend to be at the leisure centre at that time anyway for a spinning class so asked what I needed to do.
“Your job will be to keep the children away from the vending machine” came the reply. Now that is not my forte. I have trouble with keeping away from vending machines myself, but I said I’d do my best.
On the day, the children arrived earlier than anticipated. I was still red-faced and sweaty from my spinning class (even though I might not have turned up the resistance as much as I was supposed to), and despite every one of my muscles aching, I helped some children get dressed.
Today’s session was just about putting them into groups according to ability. Two at a time, they were asked to swim a width. The boy sitting next to small son didn’t budge when it was their turn, so small son jumped in with a massive smile on his face and started swimming alone. The teacher then couldn’t decide whether to get small son back or force the other boy in. She called one back, and of course the other one got in. Chaos.
Then they got out again and we were treated to the chaotic sight of more than 30 children getting dressed. Small son was surprisingly swift and the head teacher said we could go. I picked up his trainers and put them in my bag and we turned to go. A child stopped us and asked us for help finding her trainers.
“Of course”, we said, pointing at every shoe and asking if they were hers, before the head teacher said, once again, that we could go. Halfway back home, I got my house keys ready from under a pair of trainers in my bag. But if small son is wearing his, whose are these?
We sprinted back to the pool and I presented the shoes to the girl, as discreetly as I could. “Where were they?” shouted a bunch of relieved parents. “Er, in my bag”, I said.
“But why would you do that?”
“I don’t know – a mum’s tidying up reflex I think”.
At least we won’t be invited back….