Michaela Merz

The last swim

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334981_web_r_k_b_by_irene-lehmann_pixelio-deThe news announced that the beautiful summer is coming to an end. It is mid-September, so it‘s not really surprising. But the news made it clear to me that this Wednesday I won’t be working from 7.00 am to 7.00 pm, and then drive home quickly, cook the evening meal and have a discussion with my youngest. No, on Wednesday, if its 28 degrees outside, at 6.00 pm I’ll drive to the Seebad and have a final swim in the lake.

At half past six, the pool was full, incredibly full for a Wednesday evening. The water was 24 degrees. The sun was shining, everywhere pure joie-de-vivre and pleasure. The lake was full with small and large yachts, paddle boats, motor boats, SUPs and every possible water going vehicle, including the large steamer, which stops next to the swimming pool. All the boats were creating quite a few waves, so that swimming was fun, but also relatively strenuous.

So at quarter past seven the bath attendant started his rounds and warned the swimmers to come out of the water, so that he could go home. I followed reluctantly and slowly but then the sun was already disappearing behind the Uetliberg and suddenly it became darker. The weather forecast reported thunderstorms and rain and a fall in temperature of 10 degrees for the next day. So I left the swimming pool and the summer much against my will. Today one should be able to halt the time a little, so beautiful it was.

But, as so often, the forecast was simply not right. The next day it was cooler, but not really cold and the rain had not commenced. It was cloudy, but time and again the sun was able to break through and radiate a blissful warmth. Today was the last day the lake pool was open for swimming. Tomorrow it goes into hibernation and will not be re-awakened with a kiss for 9 months. Clearly I wanted, and had, to use this opportunity.

Compared with my last visit, the pool was eerily empty. Apart from myself and 2 bored bath attendants there were 5 visitors. Compared with all the screeching, screaming and playing children and adults on Wednesday, the peace was very surprising. I have never experienced the pool so empty.

I swam under bright sunshine into water that was calm and empty without waves and enjoyed myself. The outside temperature was about 18 degrees, the water temperature 21 degrees. A wonderful combination for swimming!

When after an hour’s swim I climbed out of the lake, I had to discover with surprise that my age old bathing towel had disappeared. I had had it since my university days, it felt like an eternity. It reminded me of my time in Oslo and, although it was rather thin, I could not separate myself from it. Now we had been separated involuntarily! Materially, it was no loss. In future I will have to call up my thoughts of Oslo without remembering it. But why someone in the almost empty swimming pool should take probably the oldest bathing towel, is inexplicable.

Or is there perhaps a Loch Ness Monster with hidden hygienic needs in the lake?


Irene Lehmann  / pixelio.de

One thought on “The last swim

  1. Pingback: My bathing costume has gone astray | Michaela Merz

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