5 December 2008

Parnell Baths

After my sunglasses were stolen while I showered at Birkenhead's Osborne Pool a few weeks ago, I vowed to never return. Not too difficult, considering it was a pretty tough 11km bike ride each way. Don't get me wrong, I like biking (love it, even), but it's sometimes a challenge to motivate myself to swim after riding all that way, and knowing I have to get home too.

As such, I looked into swimming at the gorgeous Parnell Baths, a mile from where I attend school each day. Before my obsession for North Shore Swimming developed, I wanted to swim for Parnell. I think this was because I met Aidan Crouch when I was thirteen, who is - in my opinion - the best-looking guy on the face of the earth, and that's where he swam. Yes, I make pretty huge decisions based on superficial reasons. But is there any other way?

Aidan Crouch: Yes please.

Anyway, on Tuesday I rode the Jamis to the Parnell Baths. The 11% downhill gradient was fun on the way there, and as usual, I put the fact that I'd have to ride back UP it out of my mind for the time being. I was not disappointed when I arrived. Firstly there was the surprisingly good-looking guy behind the counter (it's been so long since I've seen a real true-life good-looking guy), followed by the fact that this pool is outdoors, 60m long, and salt water. If you've not swum in a salt water pool, you're like, missing out on one of life's luxuries. I had such a nice afternoon at the Parnell Baths.

It's reasonably priced, too - especially given its location. It's $4.40 for a student, whereas at the crappy Takapuna pool, it's $6. Flag.

It was a bit weird swimming in an oversize long-course pool, but I figure all these pools with an extra 8 or 10 metres tacked on the end up here in Auckland can only make for better swimming. I will definitely be returning to the Parnell Baths, and purchasing a season pass, so I can swim whenever I want. The uphill jaunt on the way back into town will be tolerated for the simple fact that I'm going to have so much more fun training!

If, like me you're an Auckland dweller and want to come training, flick me a text, or join me at the Parnell Baths, Judges Bay Road, Parnell.

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