In the swim – Canada

In the swim
Surrey, Canada

Surrey, Canada


I like breakfast. It’s our antepenultimate morning (you know, the one before the one before the last one) in Canada so maybe it’s time for something exciting! I’m thinking about the maple breakfast Panini I’ve seen advertised at Tim Horton’s. I look across at Kirsty. She isn’t working today, but has one of those pre-natal tests this morning. It’s that nasty one where the lucky testee isn’t allowed to eat anything until about 11:00 o’clock. Moral dilemma! Be supportive, or enjoy that maple flavoured sausage delight with a large cup of coffee on the side. Oh well, cereal is better for you anyway. Besides, we still have a bowl of mangoes, a bigger bowl of cherries, and some Saskatoon berries to finish before we return to the dull winter offerings back home.

That thought of impending winter is a bit gloomy. It’s still summer here. A vision of golden beaches comes to mind. Ah – did that last week – remember? Oh yeah, grey sand, cold water, killer whales etc etc. How about the pool? Now that’s an idea! Just after midday we jump in the Dodge for the gruelling five-minute journey to the local recreation centre. I don’t expect that Surrey could possibly hope to compete with the Toowoomba’s famous Milne Bay Memorial Pool, but I keep my thoughts to myself. I remember only too well the defeated look in Murray’s eyes a couple of weeks ago when it was confirmed by all-knowing Wikipedia that the big Canadian flag flying on 104th is actually four times the size of Toowoomba’s proudest effort.

We arrive at the rec centre and I’m not quite sure who would have won the “ours is bigger” debate. Sure, this complex is fully indoors, and there’s a huge kids pool with water toys provided, and it’s heated. OK, it does also have a free waterslide. And yes, there’s an ice hockey rink as well – but – well who needs a hockey rink anyway.

The water looks really tempting, until I notice that there are about two hundred small kids in the pool, and none of them ever get out to rush to the washrooms. Hmm, I might just wander over to the big pool to watch the Canadian Olympic swim team running through their paces. One end of the pool has been roped off for a learn-to-swim class, and the other end is reserved for diving, so the Olympians have to settle for a stroke, stroke, turn routine. They may not do too well in the Olympics, but I reckon they’ll be deadly in short course competitions.

I’m about to make some coaching suggestions when a siren sounds. What? Sharks here? No, it’s just the signal for everyone to get out of the pool. Today’s instalment of summer swim lessons is about to start. All around the complex, college students on summer break are gathering little tribes of kids and adults together. We’re not learning, so it’s time for a quick change and maybe a coffee. By fortunate chance, the rec centre is right next to a Tim Horton’s. I know it’s way too late to get that tantalising maple breakfast Panini, but I’m sure I’ll find something.

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