An early morning swim

Wednesday, June 06, 2018



Mornings like this make me so happy to be on my way for a swim. The sparkling sea is the ultimate temptation, don't you think? I was striding out with a couple of friends on this particular Sunday morning, promising them that we would enjoy the special experience of sea swimming together. "We won't go far or fast or deep." was my promise. My companions were Kay and Sue, two visitors I'd met twice over the past year. The first time, a year ago, we'd chatted about island life and I'd told them about my hobby. I offered to take them with me the next day for an early morning swim, but Sue wasn't up for it. Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago when Sue and Kay attended the opening night party at the gallery. They introduced themselves, reminding me that we'd talked about me helping a friend to brave the sea last year. Sue went on to say that I had inspired her to join her local swimming club and learn to swim - I'm sure she won't mind me telling you that she's 72, making this is a pretty bold undertaking.


The weather, the setting and the sea couldn't have been any more perfect. 


We had swum along the beach together and then I'd raced back to collect my camera to get these shots. The morning couldn't have been any more idyllic which added a wonderful sense of magic to the occasion. Let's hear Sue's account of her experience - 

"Never too old..........

It began when I met Anna last year during my stay on Tresco. Her enthusiasm for all year round swimming in the beautiful sea around the island inspired me to prepare myself for the challenge of joining her when I return the following year.


But being a non swimmer meant several months of swimming lessons at my local pool before I had gained the confidence and ability to join Anna this year for my first sea swim in the crystal waters of Old Grimsby bay.

I might add that Anna was not only the source of inspiration but also took my hand and walked beside me into the cold sea. It was truly exhilarating and I shall be eternally grateful."


Sue is on the left and Kay on the right.


And this from Kay -

` May 2017, in the gallery on Tresco chatting to Anna who kindly invited us to go swimming in the sea the next day, we gently declined…….it was freezing………
But it planted a seed!!!!



`May 2018 again chatting to Anna, the invitation was mentioned again, so I said Yes regardless of my friend's decision, who by the way, had learnt to swim properly during the year, but I knew we would regret this if we didn’t do it……….



` Morning came and we were ready for 8 am when Anna kindly collected us, so we all walked to the chosen beach in some anticipation.  It was a beautiful morning but still cool as it had been during our two week stay, and then there we were ready in our costumes, Anna having gently told us what we were going to do. …………so we all held hands and walked with calmness and confident step concentrating on our breathing until we were waist high and just let go…….and swam……. It wasn’t a shock even though the water was so so cold, but exhilarating, uplifting, exciting and most of all the feeling of how joyful it was to feel alive, the morning was so beautiful the sea so blue, the beach so white, the sunlight reflecting on the water and a voice calling out behind me ` I`m swimming`


My new swimming buddies are sporting that fabulous afterglow that says "I'm alive and I feel great!"

Well done ladies and particularly to you, Sue for overcoming this hurdle and turning yourself into a sea swimmer. Perhaps you too can be an inspiration to someone you meet and empower them to try something outside of their comfort zone. See you next year ladies and don't forget your cossies!

Anna x

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18 comments

  1. Gotta admire their spirit, and their figures ... they look a.maz.ing! Looks a beautiful day and so idyllic.
    Last weekend I got into the sea for the first time this year. Cold. Nuff said!
    Hugs, x.

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    1. You're right Mary, they showed great spirit. I think the perfect morning really helped them to overcome their final reservations and yes, don't they both look fabulous! And hey, well done to you for taking your first dip too.

      Anna x

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  2. That is so inspirational! How wonderful that your new friends got to experience this magic of a swim in the ocean.

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    1. This is one of my favourite things, helping ladies brave these cold waters. I get a real buzz from their buzz!

      Anna x

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  3. What a wonderful experience this must have been for your friends. And what a magical place you live in. The sea really is such an amazing shade of blue. I love that early morning photo too! xxx

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    1. Thanks for that! We all had great fun that morning and how lucky we're we with that weather? It does look pretty awesome doesn't it.

      Anna x

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  4. I think it is amazing to be able to swim all year round in the sea. And what a brave ladies!

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    1. Weren't they brave! I was so proud of them that they didn't hesitate nor flinch, but just got right in.

      Anna x

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  5. Well done Kay and Sue and to Anna for the encouragement! What a perfect day for it. I have swum in the sea but I haven't been brave enough as yet when on Scilly.

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    1. It was a great previlege to share that lovely morning dip with my new friends. We really couldn't have had a more perfect day.
      Maybe you and I need to get together for a swim next time you're on Scilly Tessa?

      Have a great week!
      Anna x

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  6. Ah!! the sweetness of being an inspiration to your friends. This is such a special post Anna. Kay and Sue happily bobbing as they tread water for these photos make for some memorable moments on your blog Anna.
    When I first found your blog I was so impressed by your body and soul commitment to the daily swim and the other challenging goals you conquered in your life as a swimmer. Bravo Anna!! I love seeing Kay and Sues heads happily bobbing while you take their photos. Congratulations to Sue for a goal well met!!

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    1. I'm so pleased you enjoyed this post Jude. Sue and Kay loved it too. I was walking backwards calling "Keep swimming towards me, keep coming!" and they did! It may have just been a gentle breast stroke, but they covered a fair bit of ground before declaring enough. It's always a thrill to infuse others with the joy of open water swimming, as you never know how people will respond to the cold water shock. They were both surprised not to notice the sea temperature until later and by then they were on their way.

      Have a fab week!
      Anna x

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  7. This brought a lump to my throat. Sisterhood is a wonderful thing. I salute all of you! I live in South Africa in sub tropical Durban and the temperatures have to hit almost 30deg C before I venture in to the sea which remains at a pretty constant 22deg C all year long. I’m a ninny. Love your blog Anna- Scilly Isles are on my bucket list. Lesley Randles

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    1. Hello and welcome to the blog Lesley! I must admit that the prospect of swimming all year round in 22 degrees sounds rather lovely and I can't believe that you don't. In winter the sea temperature here drops to 8 degrees which does take a bit of teeth gritting to get me in for my daily dip, but the afterglow always makes it worthwhile.
      I look forward to welcoming you to these islands one day, my dear!

      Anna x

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  8. What stunning ladies, with fabulous figures - maybe I need to come to the Island to get a figure like that! Hope you had fun my friend. Jacqui Mummabstylish

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    1. Yes, aren't they a couple of stunners - those trim figures are all down to their walking group though! Great fun was had by all, I can assure you.

      Anna x

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  9. Of COURSE you got them to swim! I remember your work on my Mum!!! So glad they did it (and niiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiice swimming costumes ladies!!!) . I long to come back there and swim again!x

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    1. It's so lovely encouraging friends to take a dip and yes, I do remember working my magic on your mother. I would love you to come back too!

      Anna x

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