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A fun day out (with plus the Dad)

Daddy PlusTheDog Post

Some of these posts are serious, some have a significant message… and it seems that some are a chance to debunk the 100% non-stop fun concept of parenthood. On reflection this falls into the third category.

The other day I had a chance to take The Girl, out for an adventure. Our local swimming pool has an ‘inflatable session’… One of these events where a massive inflatable castle/world/town/world gets put in the pool and the kids LOVE IT.

I’m sure of it.

As The Wife gets to take the children out for their weekly swimming lessons, it seems like a great chance to see how more advanced she’d become at swimming. The Wife says that she’s nearly swimming on her own… Well, this should lead to a super fun time of it for us in the children’s pool?



In discussion with the Girl and The Wife I found out she’s had a crisis of confidence with diving, jumping, swimming of most sorts after a bad underwater session in a previous swimming lesson. Ah… Still… Daddy’s the king of adventure, this’ll make no difference – We’ll turn her round. It will be fine.

The level of how much it was NOT fine can be measured in three key stages:

The inflatable session. 

If there was small print I should have read it. No impressive imposing inflatable. Just lots of half-decayed floats and those plastic tubey things that float in pools (Ah, a web search tells me they’re called ‘noodles’. Who’d have thought). Not quite as much joy with these.

The swim itself

Well, this didn’t go well, nothing was good. Well, one thing was good – getting OUT of the pool and running round it in circles while Daddy tries to coax her back in without further terrifying her of the water, or resorting to dragging her back in. Nothing was right – Swimming wasn’t fun, playing with floats wasn’t fun. Then she said she wanted to go to the toilet, so I started to take her out before she said she didn’t anymore. Then we had more running around. A little more complaining at being in the pool. Another attempt to get hold of the floats that we weren’t allowed to play with (the ones still in good condition). I gave up. Back to get changed…

The clean up.

Well. All became a little clearer when we got to the change rooms. We got our bags and into a little booth and then I pulled off her swimming costume. 



It turns out The Girl had a very upset stomach this afternoon and this had manifested itself in grandiose style. In my haste to get her changed it had already gone everywhere. The booth immediately looked like we’d conducted a dirty protest.

So… What to do. Mind racing. Stomach turning. The Girl crying I tried to come up with a plan. Funnily, very little in my world experience up until now had prepared me for this moment.

Well, the showers were my only option. I packed up the clean(ish) kit into my bag. Hid that all back into the lockers. Took everything that was dirty into the showers (REALLY grateful the changing rooms only had a few gents in there).

This was The Girl. Her swim nappy. Her swim costume. Me. My swimming trunks.

I felt really bad for the couple of chaps that were in there – I tried to start the clean up quite clandestinely in the furthest corner but the tsunami of brown running down into the middle of the shower to the drain wasn’t sparing my blushes. Eventually the two gents took the hint and left and then I unleashed on the poo – Getting it all off us, and then trying to clean up her swim costume. Easy. Nope… Turns out it wasn’t going down the drain into the grille, so this was a further joy, trying to mash it down there with my foot. I have no idea how bad the scene must have looked but to me it was highly traumatising. To the poor chaps that walked in for a shower, gasped (I definitely heard at least one gasp) and then back tracked as fast as possible, I can only imagine how hideous it must have been. I’m not sure what they did. Probably went home with a nightmarish vision & smelling of chlorine.

I have no idea how long this clean up took. It felt like hours, but was probably only minutes. 

They were long minutes… On reflection, I do hope The Girl hasn’t got any long term harm over having to witness Daddy going all Basil Fawlty over battling her poo down a very fine grille in the gents shower rooms.

What’s my take away from this.

Fun won’t always end up being fun.

If a three year old ever mentions toilet to me in a pool I am out of there at Mach 3.

My vanity can cope with standing in a large shower room surrounded by the most hideous childs bottom eruption. Just. The secret is to not look at the faces of all the gents trying to get into have a shower themselves. Never look in their direction or their faces. NEVER.

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