Olympic Timing with Imaginary Friends

My 6 year old granddaughter, Katherine, spent much of our recent vacation in her new pool. It is only about 30 inches deep and 10 feet across but a welcomed prop for our steamy week. We were at our woodland camp, so the Summer Olympics were watched by generator power as recaps on the morning news.

She played alone most of the time during our one week stay but the Olympic theme saved those days. Katherine was an Olympian and I played the role of her diving coach. Her imaginary friends, Zabby and Alodda, made a surprise appearance out of retirement (from Hampton Beach) and participated too. (See my Zabby Eight Update category for more adventures.)

Katherine would stand a little more than waist deep in the pool. I graded her leaps and dives according to the least splash and best form. Zabby and Alodda would try to keep up but Katherine seemed to have the most natural ability. I was really impressed by her progress. She learned to keep her feet together and managed to have her fingertips, top of her head and body enter the water in that order. If she did not leap high enough a belly flop would disqualify her.

This weekend she is going to her other grandparents’ place where there is a much deeper pool. I’m excited to find out how she uses her new skills.The 2012 Summer Olympics were well timed indeed and I’m sure she’ll never forget them. Wonder if Zabby and Alodda will be traveling with her?

What I Lost and Want Back

Go get ’em girls!

rachel # 10 fielding

Back in the day, I was a pretty good athlete. That was a time when women’s sports was in its infancy.

My particular talents were inspired by the “girls needed to be better than boys in order to play with them” concept. I was.

In sixth grade,the boys were short a “man” on the basketball court one day. I was asked to play. With my heart in my throat, I knew I needed to shine for the good of all girls. I kept up very nicely. The new found respect I received was intoxicating.

The male teachers must has been talking, after the fact,because I received quite a few thumbs-up in the hallway the next day.

By the time I was in 7 th grade, I had a bit of a reputation as a “girl jock”. The teachers were planning a teacher/boy football scrimmage and we were discussing it in Math class. Our Math teacher was also a boys coach. The question of the dimensions of a football field came up.Our own famed quarterback offered the answer of 100 yards X 53 yards. Oh boy! What a moment followed when I interjected the correct dimensions of 100 yards X 53 and one third yards.The Math teacher threw his chalk in the air while muttering,”Unbelievable.”

I went on to enjoy a High School career in field hockey, soccer and softball. We did not have uniforms or manicured playing fields but we were the first girls team to get one bus trip for a local scrimmage with the Williams College women’s team. It was a start.

Nowadays, women are respected in athletics.

I like to think it is ,in part, because of young women like myself from the 60s.

I do miss that thrill of victory and the physical agility that I once had. My hands are very arthritic now. I’d really love to shine once again!

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