A couple of weeks ago I received an e-mail warning me that I needed to put in a few more gym visits in order not to lose my free gym benefit that I earn through my Discovery Health Vitality medical aid scheme. So I duly went a few more times and was planning on going again when a little later I received a second e-mail informing me that my gym membership benefit had now expired.
Turns out that I had misread the first e-mail as having to go twice instead of the actual twelve times needed in order to make up the required number of visits for the twelve month rolling period.
Quite annoyed, I quickly logged in to my Virgin Active customer portal to verify my visits, and ashamedly saw that in the last twelve months I had in fact only visited gym 24 times. 24 times!? In twelve months!? Clearly I’m no longer a gym person! Turns out that going straight home in the evening to play with Jessica, walking in the morning, and making a conscious effort at work to build relationships with my colleagues instead of just disappearing at lunch time means that I have zero time (or interest for that matter) in visiting a gym.
So that is that then. My free gym membership has ended and quite frankly, based on my current usage stats, it just really doesn’t make sense to join up again any time soon. That said, there now isn’t really a reason for me continuing to pay for Discovery Health Vitality either, so I’m pretty sure they’ll be losing their money from me soon.
It would seem that the treadmills at Steenberg Virgin Active have suddenly all decided to rebel against me.
So picture this. It’s lunch hour and I find myself happily kitted out in gym and ready to put in a quick 20 minute run before I return to my ball and chain back at the office.
The first treadmill I step on has much promise, overlooking the swimming pool, a working television monitor, looks pretty clean – only one problem though – it looks like the software has jammed up because this damn thing simply won’t start up!
No worries though, this is a whole bank of treadmills, none of which are currently in use. So I’ll simply shift over to the next one, and punch in the exercise plan and hey, I’m off.
However, only five minutes into my run and all of a sudden the unit loses power and decelerates to a stop, leaving a rather sweaty and bemused Craig standing at a complete and utter loss for words.
Bugger. Two treadmills in one session?
Oh well, on to the next one then I suppose. This one started out a lot better and soon I was happily huffing and puffing away, plodding along at a fair speed and enjoying the exertion while watching some TV on the monitor, when all of a sudden, without warning, the machine stopped dead in its tracks, screaming a message about the track being blocked and catapulting a rather surprised Craig violently forwards.
Now of course, with my body weight being what it is, it takes a little longer for my upper body to stop going forward after my legs have already been planted (damn you inertia!), and so there was no real alternative other than to crash heavily into the front of the treadmill.
Needless to say, it really isn’t a surprise that I now pick the exercise bikes until I reckon it’s safe to approach those nasty treadmills again! :P
Why, oh why does Steenberg Virgin Active seem intent on creating a race condition for towel hooks in their shower facilities? Look, I love the fact that this is one of the few Virgin Active’s that saw it fit to actually put doors on their shower cubicles for a change – which is pretty cool – but for the life of me I can’t understand why the 12 shower cubicles, arranged in a inwards facing square consisting of three attached cubicles on each side, all feature a ration of two towel hooks per three showers.
It simply doesn’t add up!
So what follows now is a race to claim one of the towel hooks before they are all gone, with the potential of causing some pretty nasty and potentially embarrassing scenes.
So tell me Virgin Active Steenberg – do you really want grown-up, naked sweaty men fighting in your shower area? O.o
Last Friday didn’t get off to the best of starts, and technically the drive home didn’t end on a good note either.
You see, I arrived early morning at the Steenberg Virgin Active gym like I always do and as I proceeded to swipe in, I was asked to please stick to the one side of the gym as they were currently dealing with a medical emergency on the other side. There on the lower level, down the left hand side of the pool a number of screens had been put up and you could see a number of paramedics working on someone lying down on the ground. Twenty minute or so later, the foil sheets were pulled up, police arrived and a bodybag made its appearance.
You see, as Chantelle later confirmed via a newspaper article, a middle-aged man had succumbed to a rather unexpected heart attack while swimming laps.
This got me then thinking about how death really can strike at any time and now with all my family responsibilities, I really do need to make better preparations for that possible eventuality. After all, now that I have a child on the way and something was say to happen to me, how would my wife be able to cope financially, never mind emotionally and everything else that comes with an unexpected death?
So what does this mean?
Well for starters, it does mean that I really should start looking after myself a bit better. I’m one of those “if I don’t know about it then I don’t have to worry about it” sort of blokes and as such have no idea of my current health status other than the rather informal “I feel fine” verbal test. Maybe, just maybe I guess I need to start forming some sort of relationship with a healthcare practitioner sooner than later, something I’m pretty sure Chantelle will be pretty wild about! :)
More importantly than that, I do now have to look into things like life insurance policies and the like, because quite frankly, I really don’t want to sit with a situation where if I pass away my wife and child are dropped into absolute poverty or something like that. Of course, this means a bit of legwork from my side, and also leaves me with a question or two which I guess I’ll have to make time to find the answer to.
Sigh, all these extra things to think of and plan for now that one has padded themself with a family!
But responsibility is good and providing for is one of the things that makes a man a man and for that I am pleased to be in the process of building up the next generation Lotter family.
But it wasn’t good starting the day witnessing the life of a man ebb away after something as trivial as swimming a lap in a pool. Nor was it good to witness another man lying dead in the road after being knocked down by a car on my way home…
Oh noes, Jetta Jameson has gone and done it again. My lifelong partner has decided to once more say bye bye to her clutch and in doing so, leave me stranded all the way out in Westlake at the Steenberg Virgin Active parking lot. Sigh.
It all unfolded on Monday evening, after a late day at the office due to another job interview I was part of (Touchwork is hiring again in case you’re interested). Although already too late for karate practice, I was nevertheless keen to get home sooner than later in anticipation of a great meal prepared by Chantelle at the start of her healthy eating campaign, and after offering a lift to Dave whose car was funnily enough currently sitting in the shop, went to collect Jetta Jameson from the Virgin Active’s basement.
With bags all packed and ready for Dave, I eased Jetta up the ramp and as I turned up the last corner and started heading for daylight and those annoying access booms just up ahead, all of a sudden the clutch jumped inwards, propelled my foot forwards and yanked out a well-placed “fuck” from my mouth, all at the same time.
Luckily I was stuck in first and so continued my painful crawl up the ramp, with me leaning forward out of my open window frantically waving my access disc around in the hopes I could trigger the boom to lift before Jetta’s nose reached it. I did.
However, I wasn’t quite out of the woods yet. Now in a busy cul-de-sac with no where to pull to the side of the road, I opted to swing right, past an astonished and quite bewildered Dave, heading straight for Virgin Active’s outside parking, which yes, is also protected by a boom. This time my leaning out the window with the access disc didn’t quite work out and I was forced to shut her down just before she plowed into the boom, stopping literally just with a centimetre or two to spare!
I tentatively opened the boom and started her in first, where she jolted forward to life and edged through the boom, thankfully missing it on the way in. Now desperately scanning for an open space in what is quite frankly an almost always busy parking lot, I was rewarded with a huge stroke of luck as I spotted an open spot directly ahead of me, allowing me to guide Jetta safely home and put her to rest within its snuggly confines.
By this stage Dave was rather confused, and as I grabbed the valuables and my gym stuff out of the car, I explained to him the dilemma and as such, sent him on his way in search of train in order to make his own way home. I on the other hand grabbed my phone and phoned my lifeline, Chantelle, who just so happened to have gotten home minutes earlier, having just completed her epic grocery shopping trip.
Eager to help, we hatched up a rescue plan and happy in the knowledge that help was now on its way, I made my way back to the office to enjoy a nice cup of coffee and some toast with peanut butter on. Needless to say, this didn’t change the fact that I was still feeling quite grumpy. (Actually, grumpy is probably too nice a way of putting the mood I was in!)
Unfortunately for me though, in my infinite stupidity I had managed to slightly screw up the directions I had given Chantelle and after the allotted time had passed and she still hadn’t arrived, I realised my mistake and phoned her to find her well on her way all the way through to Wynberg. She wasn’t impressed, I was grumpy, and my repaired directions proved to be pretty inaccurate too, meaning that more than one phone call had to be directed between the two of us, with the end result of her only arriving at around 19:15 to pick a rather tired and stressed Craig, sitting all alone on the sidewalk, up.
The drive home back to Gordon’s Bay was a pretty silent affair, but we did at least manage to bash out a plan that involved Monty and Cheryl coming through to Westlake where Monty and I would tow the car back to Disa Auto Services in Strand while Cheryl would bring back Chantelle’s car which I would borrow after dropping her off at work on her split shift in the morning.
Still, this didn’t really improve my mood and as such our trip home took a slight detour as Chantelle treated me to a Spur burger to try and cheer me up.
Burger was good, but Castle draught was better. Mood not all that better, still grumpy, but at least all the relevant phone conversations and smses were handled.
Slept surprisingly well though…
[End Part 1]