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Monday, 20 August 2012

Disappearing dusk

It's already begun. No longer evening, not quite night. I'm in the space in between where the sun gives one last push of brilliance before disappearing completely; a final flourish as the curtain comes down.
Colours grow sharper and the shadows on the grass below lie elegant, long. They seem to stretch out to forever.
I glance up just as a plane full of people powers higher and higher into the sky and sweeps away from City Airport, climbing further from the ground with every second. Soon we will all just look like ants.
The light is changing. The window is closing and everything that was bathed in a hyper-real glow is starting to fade.
This is the end. And also the beginning.
I wonder about tomorrow. I wonder about the many things it holds gently in its hands for me and how with every sunset, we imperceptibly change.
The air is getting cooler now and I briefly consider going inside to grab my blue jumper when something stops me. The edge of Canary Wharf is suddenly illuminated with my personal sunset. It happens most evenings and only ever lasts for a few minutes, but every single time, I'm awe-struck. Feeling my lungs fill with air, a wave of hope washes over me as I realise how much potential there is within each and every one of us.
The shadows on the grass below have now disappeared into the dusk and in a moment I will pick up my cup and head inside. The door will close and the blind will be pulled across. The lamp will go on and tea will be poured. But right now I am blinded by the reflection of the sun.
And it is beautiful.

Saturday, 11 August 2012

Three and a half pike

Switching on the TV, I crash onto the sofa just as the screen comes to life and illuminates the room. It has already begun. I watch as he walks up to the edge of the platform and stands looking out over the cool, rippling water below. An eerie silence washes over the spectators as we wait. And wait... 
Prepare..take a breath..launch..pike..somersault..once, twice, three and a half times into a straight extension..arms through the water..vanish.
And so the spectacle continues as I look on amazed; awe-struck and inspired. One by one their bodies tease gravity with every twist and turn and I can't help but wonder how it is possible to fly through the air at 35mph with such grace and artistry.
As with anything in life, achieving greatness takes time and energy. An athlete's journey towards the perfect 10 will always include many hours of practice, belief, blood, sweat and tears. Still they continue on regardless. There will be moments on our journey where we naturally face obstacles and self-doubt. Sometimes, we breeze through this and come out the other end unscathed. Other times, we find ourselves belly-flopping in a spectacular fashion; temporarily winded. But that's ok. It's all good practice. Pulling ourselves up out of the pool, we dry ourselves off and start climbing the steps once again in the hope that the lesson learnt will take us just that little bit closer to reaching our great potential.