Since you closed yesterday for the winter months, I have been thinking about the things I will miss like walking towards you through Petersham Park, past the camphor laurels where the butcher birds sing.
The ‘good mornings’ from fellow regulars, Peter, Gerard, Roger, Nick, Hugh and Michelle, and random chats at your shallow end.
Being surprised and delighted by the things I hear, like Hugh telling me we had a rosy-fingered dawn worthy of Homer’s Odysseus, or Gerard comparing my backstroke to a line in a Wordsworth sonnet, ‘still glides the stream, and shall for ever glide’.
Then there’s Hugh’s morning dives.
Peter’s film reviews and desire to be a fish so he can spend all his days swimming in you.
Grant, the old-style lifeguard’s hard work to look after you.
Almost always having my own lane and my half hour of quiet when I’m immersed in you.
The soft morning light casting reflections over your blue and the vista of green surrounding you.
The rosellas, magpies and kookaburras that swoop over you.
And feeling euphoric after I’ve finished swimming 40 laps in you.