Monday, May 12, 2008

Belated trip report

So . . . about that trip to Alabama weekend before last! We decided to go down so that Mike could attend a breaststroke clinic at Auburn. The instructor, Auburn alum and record setter Dave Denniston, was an enormously successful swimmer until a sledding accident robbed him of the use of his legs. Mike picked up a lot of great breaststroke tips and came away from the 2-day clinic eager to test his new knowledge in the upcoming swim season.

Fred and I joined Mike to hear Dave speak at the end of the first day. We had expected it to be a technical presentation on swimming, but instead Dave just shared his story with us. That alone was worth the price of the clinic! He's one inspirational dude--encouraging the kids to focus on the positive and worry about only the stuff they can control. He's also funny--speaking, for example, of his choice to shave his prematurely balding head ("if they can't play nice, NOBODY gets to play!").

Over the course of the weekend, Dave brought in several of his pals from the swimming world. The names meant nothing to me, but Mike was very excited and took a Sharpie with him the second day so that he could collect autographs on his camp t-shirt. He also had his picture taken with Dave, once in a normal pose and once doing the obligatory MySpace thing:

On Sunday after we dropped Mike off at the pool, Fred and Annabelle and I took off for Georgia to meet my invisible friend Dawn and her invisible daughter who is one of Annabelle's friends. (I refer to my Internet buddies as "invisible" until I've met them in real life.) We had a wonderful lunch and then cruised around Barnes and Noble browsing and chatting:

Sunday afternoon was beautiful (after a rainy Saturday), and after we picked Mike up from swim camp, we all went for a ride on Lake Martin in my father-in-law's new boat. Mike got to drive for a little while:

We had a great time and are looking forward to our next trip down in early June. Mike will be swimming his butt off at a 5-day swim camp at Auburn, but the rest of us are going to kick back and enjoy the lake.

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