[OSS Oxon] OSS Silent Swim, Saturday 17th July/ few volunteers needed

Julie Osborne julieosborne2001 at yahoo.co.uk
Wed Jul 14 14:10:35 BST 2010

Hi Kate
I can volunteer for some activities, but sorry I can't get there for 7am.  I can 
get there for 8am and can do the smiling/swim/look after bags/brekkie 
stuff/tidying-up type of things - and ideally get a bit of a swim too.

As one of the new Oxford OSS coordinators, I think I should volunteer to 
advertise this event to the the Oxford OSS group again but quite frankly haven't 
got a clue how to do it!  (I will get to grips with the technology soon!).  I'll 
check if Sefryn is able to do it though.
Hope this is enough to show willing as a new coordinator and fellow tree (or 
perhaps we should say fish ) hugger .....


From: Kate Rew <kate.rew at outdoorswimmingsociety.com>
To: ossoxon at earth.li
Cc: James Lowe <James.Lowe at datacore.com>; t.warr at brookes.ac.uk
Sent: Wed, 30 June, 2010 17:11:22
Subject: [OSS Oxon] OSS Silent Swim, Saturday 17th July/ few volunteers needed

Dear Oxford swimmers
Thanks to the kindness of one of our members, Angus, and the creativity of 
Tracey at Oxford Brookes, I am holding a silent swim on Saturday 17th July near 
Abingdon. The idea, as ever, is to introduce more people into the joys of 
swimming… and with a meditation first, and in a very special place, should be 
lovely occasion. We’re holding it as part of the Oxford Symposium on the Culture 
of Rowing & Swimming – there may be a few of you who are interested in their 
Friday talks. http://rowingandswimming.eventbrite.com/
I am looking for a few volunteers to help make it special for newcomers. Can 
you? Can you bring a non swimmer with you to help? 

Event details: 
If you’re used to swimming free on your own/with a friend, that is what we hope 
to achieve for a bigger group, some of whom will be first timers. The idea is to 
power down on the social chat, and by suggesting people not speak, allow them to 
enjoy all the sights, sounds and sensations of the riverbank. (I know I sound 
like a tree hugger… hang on, perhaps I am).
Can you? A few non-swimming roles too if you have someone who might sacrifice 
their swim for 

Roles include: 
	* Designing, laminating and cobbling together some signposts of words we can 
put down the riverbank for people to swim past
	* Turning up 7am Saturday morning to put up the event shelter, bring picnic 
blankets for people to sit on and lay then out, walk up and down riverbank 
hammering the aforementioned signpost into the bank, putting up easel with what 
happens when
	* Wearing OSS tshirt so people can ask you things about their fears of 
swimming/ the timetable (in a whisper), helping them with all the normal worries 
about shoes, bags, pike. Volunteers can buy t’s at cost price
	* Staying to guard the bags while all else pop off and swim
	* Smiling
	* Swimming in your OSS hat so people feel reassured by your presence
	* Topping and tailing each swim group. While we’re not responsible for everyone 
(it’s a social swim) but only courteous to go at the front and back so we don’t 
leave anyone behind
	* Rowing a boat (we can borrow some down there)
	* Selling OSS kit to anyone who wants it  (hats, I heart the thames book, wild 
swim, hoodies, hats)
	* If you feel so inclined, bringing more tea, coffee and breakfast things that 
you need yourself
	* Taking down event shelter and tidying up when we leave (event end by 10.30am, 
we should all be off by 11am). 

	* Photograph event or record it in some way for OSS posterity
Let me know if you can help, and in what capacity.
Many thanks
Timetable (approx)
7am: volunteers arrive, set up
Details swimmers will receive (event location is kept secret so we have some way 
of controlling and knowing numbers) 

8am – swimmers arrive, get ready to swim, put bags in bag shelter, sit on 
blankets, settle 

8.15am - meditation on the banks, led by a local teacher. After this QUIET TIME!
8.25am - walk up or down the banks, led by an OSS swimmer... one route will be a 
swim of about a mile, the other route will be a swim of about half a mile. You 
will be walking barefoot in your swimming cossies, unless wearing shoes you plan 
to swim in, across some gravel and along the Thames path
8.35ish - get in and swim! Enjoy the sights and sounds of the riverbank. 
Recently we saw an oyster catcher in the Thames here, in search of freshwater 
mussels. The entry points are typical of rivers: a bit of clambering and reeds 
may be required, although we have found two sandyish beaches (but there's bound 
to be some mud)
9ish - emerge back at the start point! Time to reflect and share experiences. 
Probably keep volume down for a while, so people still swimming hear only 
whispers. Enjoy & share whatever food you have brought with you - thermos, 
croissants, camping stoves and sausages, it's up to you
9.55ish - when everyone is back and dry and has shared and eaten, we'll have a 
little visualisation and meditation to finish. Some things we may not have 
noticed in the water often come back to you at these times.
10.30am/11am; volunteers leave
Kate Rew
07931 546241
Author, journalist and director of Outdoor Swimming Society
	* Number 2 on Monocle's global hot list of people who deserve a bigger stage in 
2010. “Stroke of genius” (Monocle, Issue 29) 

	* “The force behind the wild swimming movement” (Triathlon 220) 
	* “The Outdoor Swimming Society has become a cult movement.” (Rowan Pelling, 
Daily Telegraph). 

	* Reviews of Wild Swim by Kate Rew: "Her prose is perfect. Page after page she 
nails things. Will have you hunched on the sofa as though with a stash of love 
letters." (The New Statesman) "A wonderful - in the old sense of that term - and 
joyful romp of a book. So go on. Dive in" (Robert Macfarlane, author of The Wild 

June OSS news: the OSS Midsummer Party, Big Jump, swimming Everest, social swims 
a-go-go, member discounts and the PM is one of us. For swimming related news, 
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