Friday 14 February – Wait. What? A swimming gala on Valentine’s Day? But BESA, why would you do such a thing? Because in a modern world that places far too much emphasis on the ‘day of love’, we feel that it’s better to have a distraction; and what better distraction from love (or the lack thereof) than a swimming gala?
Cue the gazebos. Cue the sunscreen (with an SPF of at least 100, because you know, Africa). Cue the war cries. Cue the starter’s whistle. Cue the swimming, the fun, and the games (and of course a bit of friendly competition between the houses; which naturally, Griffin is the best…just saying).
So, with Meneer Jacobs on the whistle, Mrs André on the mic, and Jason at the DJ booth bringing the fresh tracks (is that what the cool kids say?), the day began with, believe it or not, a splash! (I know right, not cliché at all). But in all seriousness though, there was a rather big splash created when the Grade 11 boys took off from the starting blocks – big Kyle Heukelman (no seriously he’s big. Like almost Lebron James big) must’ve displaced at least 17 litres of pool water upon entry. Perhaps it was because of his height. Perhaps it was because of his majestic dive. Perhaps it was because his personality matches his bigness. Perhaps it was because of his Faf De Klerk Speedo. Perhaps we’ll never know for sure. All we know is that it was a brilliant race featuring Kyle in lane 3, Deniel in lane 2 and Vic-Junior in lane 1. Who won you ask? No idea. Swimming. Swimming won.
Fast forward a bit to the action from the fun races. Or rather the fun-er races (yes ‘fun-er’ is a word today – deal with it). Which races could possibly be more fun than the classics you ask? Pool-noodles-between-the-legs while attempting to do the breast-stroke races, or while attempting to do the crawl stroke, or as we have been witness to, attempts at what can only be described as the ‘frog-in-a-blender’ stroke (because that’s the only possible way to recount some of the swimming techniques on display). Li’l Vokes (Timothy) was arguably the most entertaining of these swimmers, not because of his technique, but because of his entry into the pool which comprised of a little run down the side and then a jump in (which was not so much a ‘frog-in-a-blender’ jump, but was more of a, ‘I’m-stealing-unfair-meters-thinking-nobody-will-notice’ jump.) Li’l Vokes. Street name. Street smart. We like you.
He wasn’t the only entertainer during these races however, some of the pool-noodle-between-the-legs jumps were dead entertaining and dead hilarious (‘dead’ – thanks Adrian Mole). It’s stuff that simply could not be scripted. The techniques varied of course; Benjamin showed us the ‘Harry Potter’ entry (he seriously looked like he was taking off for a game of Quidditch). Cheyenne showed us the ‘block-your-nose-while-falling-in-and then-catching-a-pool-noodle-on-the-chin’ technique. A few others (who shall not be named because of reasons) showed off their belly-flopping prowess, while others literally had no clue as to how to successfully negotiate a pool noodle jump or dive. Again, it was stuff that could simply not be scripted – one looked like a falling sack-of-potatoes while another looked as though they were a cowboy straddling an untamed beast; another jumped so loftily in the air they appeared as a majestic pool-noodle-riding kangaroo. There were belly-flops and ‘felly-blops’ galore! Great times!
All-in-all, while being a ridiculously entertaining morning from a spectator perspective, it was an extremely successful day of swimming given that we’re just a bunch of part-timers (at best). Although, having said that, we do have a few learners who are indeed brilliant swimmers and who have received all kinds of accolades including regional and national colours.
We are extremely proud of all our learners, those who participated and braved the cold water as well as those who supported their fellow housemates while braving the sweltering heat.
Pegasus house took the points honours followed closely by Griffin and Phoenix. All three houses gave it their all though, both in and out of the pool – the war cries rang out brilliantly throughout the day echoing sublimely off the beautiful mountains and greenery that surrounds our school. All we see are the colours of red, blue and yellow! BESA Bears!