Saturday, 7 December 2013

One week into Summer and the weather can't read a calender


It really is a beautiful day outside but not warm enough to swim unless you are dedicated and have a 4cm thick wet suit. The water off the coast here in Warrnambool comes direct from the antarctic and still contains melting ice blocks except after a week of 40oC and then it is delightful for cooling sunburned skin. I love a sunburnt country(thank you Dorothea McKellar)...but not sunburnt skin. I loved swimming as a child. I swam in the Acheron(not that Acheron) and the Taggerty river and went to Eildon Weir, well swimming happened in Frazer National Park and not in the pondage of course and we loved the dark swift water of the Golburn near Alexandra. It seemed so still on the surface but under that still surface it ran deep and dark and swift. Swimming at the Alexandra swimming pool was interesting. It was always cold. We had our swimming lessons at the beginning of summer and could earn our little certificates. Dolphins and Porpoises in the tiny pool and the much more advanced lessons and challenges in the big pool. I went for my bronze medallion in primary school and I swam my 25 laps fully clothed and shed my clothes and shoes in the deep end then dove down deep from a stationary position to retrieve them all. I did the CPR and the 25 laps using four different strokes and tread water for half an hour and watched eagerly as the other students received their medallions and congratulations and I did not. Why? Because no one thought I could do it and no medallion was ordered for me. At a guess my parents should have paid for it and didn't, I will never really know. Someone felt sorry for me and handed me a sew on patch as a consolation prize which did not console but I thank the woman from this distance. I earned that medallion. Funny about consolation prizes. It reminds me of the time we had a fancy dress ball but I told that story before. Or the time when...no I am dwelling on too many consolation prizes and I am thinking with my new career as writer I can change those consolation prizes into gold medallion firsts. The wonder of the written word is I can take a story and rewrite it. It has been done so many times in history that I can do it too. Change the past one sentence at a time.
A bit like touching up a perfectly good image to make it glossy and unrealistic but you don't know that until it is pointed out and shown beside the original. Think Charlie Chaplin coming third in a Charlie Chaplin look a like contest. I had a story rejected for publication once because it was "Unrealistic". I laughed uproariously because it was a factual story not fiction and the only unreal parts were the names but it didn't fit with their idea of what a story should be like for that genre.
I am enjoying learning more of the art of writing.