#519 theoldmortuary ponders

The End of the Day, Tinside Lido © theoldmortuary.

There is a magical moment, on Summer evenings when the swimming public have been ushered out of Plymouths Iconic Tinside Lido.The fountain is still turned on, but there are no swimmers in the water,no bystanders sat on the walls. All the staff are out of view, stacking sun loungers and deck chairs against walls far below us. For a moment the fountains sounds are not masked by squealing swimmers and all you can hear is splashing water . Then, just like that, an unseen hand flicks a switch and the splashing water of the fountain is silenced. A funny pocket of silence occurs before all the normal,environmental, sounds of a busy seafront road take over as the sun sets on another day. Why does splashing water sound so good?

I listened to a radio programme the other day about a charity that makes requested soundscape tapes for prisoners on death row in the United States. Even in completely land locked States the requests often included some sort of watery sounds. I’m still pondering what my sounds would be, were I to find myself in that somewhat niche environment.

#513 theoldmortuary ponders

I’ve been painting stormy sunrise for a couple of days. It has been a stormy everything for the last few hours. I don’t think the subject matter influenced the weather, but if I have in any way got some supernatural powers today should be a good day as I am painting Tinside Lido in high summer.

Actually not this view, but I might try this one later. It is almost identical to an old poster that lives in our bathroom.

In this poster and the imagined life beyond it there are always handsome servicemen in uniform decoratively placed at every corner. Real life is not like this. In real life the swimming rafts are a good way further out and in real life the water in the lido really is a gorgeous turquoise colour. I am not sure I would feel any sense of achievement if the rafts were this close, neither would I wish to swim in a murky green sea water pool. Since taking up sea swimming, pools are not my thing. I do however allow myself a couple of dips in the Lido, just for the love of the art deco beauty and the unique experience. It can be the most delightful suntrap and conversely it is also well positioned to make the most of cold south westerly winds even at the height of summer. Plymouth was a centre for the most delightful of holidays with my parents. They were not, however, swimmers so the Lido was definitely viewed but not experienced until I was in my 40’s with children who would enjoy it as much as I did. My delightful holidays in Plymouth took in bomb sites and remarkable modern Brutalist rebuilding. Not something that has made it onto promotional holiday posters. My arrival in this city was as marital baggage to my ex- husbands career, a two year project we thought. Many years later here I am doing that classic thing living my dream in a holiday destination, completely unplanned.

Hoping for better weather tomorrow.

#245 theoldmortuary ponders

This was a day with an unexpected ending. Today was a yardening day. Almost a year since we exchanged an exposed but fertile country garden for a coastal, white painted, stone yard.  Yardening has been a huge surprise. Today the plan was to weed and tame the jungle that the yard has become, unexpectedly fertile too.

All went to plan, but with the temperature at 23 degrees it was quite the labour of love. A sea swim was suggested but the tide was not our friend. Then we planned a swim in a local outdoor pool. The website was decidedly wonky and ultimately we couldn’t book a session.  The alternative, an ice cream and some sunbathing was a good enough plan. Until we got too hot. Retreat into the house was timely in two ways. We really were too hot, but the curious twist was an email from the cranky website that said we had managed to book a swimming session.

We were very certain we hadn’t , but a cooling swim was exactly what we needed. Arrival at the pool confirmed the crankiness of the website. Apparently everyone who visited the webpage had been given swim sessions without payment. The pool was far from full so we did that old fashioned thing of buying two tickets and prepared for a dip.

Tinside Lido

This pool is probably very familiar to anyone in Britain who watches the BBC. This image is one of the regular infills between TV programmes. As you can see it was not very busy at all and we had a wonderful swim in the historic pool.

There was another lovely bonus, bright sunshine and recently cleaned 1930’s glass bricks in the shower area gave the most wonderful distorted, abstracted views of the pool.

A fine end to a busy day.