I was determined to swim at the Venice Lido, even though we visited in December and the weather was far from warm. After a boat and a bus and a solitary walk – first through suburban streets and then through lonely pine woods – we ended up at a flat grey expanse of wet sand. Right out on the horizon was a line of water. The tide was out. Far in the distance there was a long wall out into the sea where huge ships waited.
We walked along for a bit and then I decided after coming all this way, I had to get in. I’d managed to forget my bikini bottoms so I had to borrow Liam’s swimming trunks. It was pretty cold so I kept my wooly hat on and embraced the fact that I looked like a nutter.
I ran into freezing water up to my ankles. It rippled in on the wind and I could see the hard ridges patterning the sand beneath. It didn’t get much deeper. Eventually I flung myself into water that didn’t quite reach my knees and pulled myself around with my hands on the sand. I tried to swim but my knees kept hitting the bottom.
Front crawl legs were easier and I splashed about for a while before I decided it counted. Red with cold, I stood up, laughing at how little of me the water covered, and ran back to get changed. The beach was still empty and grey, and though it wasn’t scenic, I was glad I’d got in!
I’m raising money for the Alzheimer’s Society. Please sponsor me at http://www.justgiving.com/swimbonnieswim