I don’t see my dad nearly enough. He moved quite a distance away years ago and we’re lucky if we see him once a year.
The Olympics have reminded me of some special times with my Dad. Specifically the sailing.
My dad used to be a keen sailor, every weekend he was off sailing. He was a teacher and used to take the kids sailing, he organised sailing adventures and holidays during the summer breaks and although I didn’t go to his school, he used to take me with him.
He and a mate used to sail Ospreys, competitive sailingÂ at a club on the coast. It was a larger dinghy with a trapeze. I used to love going with him and getting out there on the trapeze, just like those folks this weekend in Weymouth.
By the time I was around 16 I used to go sailing on my own or with mates. We were quite lucky in the sixth form as sailing was a choice for the sports afternoons we used to get on Wednesdays. A group of us would head off to the nearest sailing club with a teacher in a minibus and spend a couple of hours.
Dad was a big fan of Rodney Pattison, an Olympic champion who won two golds and a silver at the 1968, 72 and 76 Olympics. He was Britain’s most successful Olympic sailor until Ben Ainslie won his third gold medal in Beijing.
I’ve been so glad that the BBC coverage has been widespread this Olympics, normally you’d only get to see some highlights of the Sailing, but I’ve been able to watch as much as I wanted. It is great to remember my childhood through these Olympics, and nice to think about my Dad a little more than I probably normally would.
I must give him a ring.