P.E. & Games

I think my relationship with sports can be summed up as enthusiastic but generally lacking in ability.

The thing I remember most vividly about PE lessons was the shock of having to take a shower in public. This certainly took me some time to get used to, and I was one of the many boys who tried to dodge taking a shower. The only PE activity that I had some ability at was rope climbing. For the other activities, I just used to go through the motions and try not to bring myself to the attention of Fr. Louis and his infamous slipper.

Do you remember the houses. I was in Campion, and with all respect to my fellow Campionians, we nearly always came last in inter-house competitions.

In the 5th year, I took part in a 24 hour sponsored 5-a-side football tournament to raise money for charity, and this was really enjoyable and a good laugh.

One of my early memories of games was in the first year when the bus didn't turn up to take us back to school after the lesson, and we were told we would have to make our own way home. A few of us set off but we got hopelessly lost because none of us knew the area. It must have been in the late autumn, because I remember it getting dark and we all started to feel panicky. I think I eventually got home at 6:00pm.

The one thing I was quite good at was long distance and cross country running. I represented the first year in a couple of cross-country events and did quite well. One dodgy memory of cross country running though was the time I nearly got hit by a speeding car on a country road in Harrow Weald.

I used to avoid sports like rugby and cricket and stuck to football, which I was keen on but not particularly good at. I once remember scoring a rare goal and feeling absolutely elated for a good few days afterwards.

By the time of the 5th year, I was completely bored with games and used to bunk off wherever possible. A few of us used to go to Wealdstone open-air swimming pool in the spring term, and just sit by the side of the pool waiting until it was time to go home.

I remember entering a sprint race for one of the sports days and finishing a long way last. I was pretty embarrassed about that!

I used to like the field spots such as shot-putt and javelin, and always wanted to try the pole vault, but we were never allowed to. I remember once when the class had to demonstrate their triple jump ability, and Fr. Louis said I was really good. For a while I thought I was going to get into the school athletics team, butnothing ever came of it. Perhaps I could have been another Jonathan Edwards!
(John T 66-71)

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