Evil can be found in the most curious of places, it can hide in a multitude of shapes and sizes. It can even disguise itself as a wetsuit. This may seem far fetched to anyone who has not met my wet suit but I promise you the black glossy foam hides a devilish manner.
Until recently I had never owned a wetsuit.
Last year, we travelled down to Cornwall for a family holiday. The weather was average, the sea was colder than a polar bear's toe nail, the children and their father didn't care – because they all had wetsuits. I stood gingerly on the side of the ocean, poking a toe in on occasion and then shivering in my shorts. I didn't buy a wetsuit because I thought it would cling to all the places I would rather I didn't have, I promised myself that next year I would join in the fun.
Next year has circled around quickly. We are heading back to Cornwall in a week. Clearly 12 months ago I envisioned strutting into the store and plucking a size 10 wetsuit off the hanger and paying with a jubilant smile. Reality is I wobbled a bit yesterday when I went to score myself a suit and the only 10 on the tag related to the price.
But I did it, I bought a wetsuit.
I had a 'strong female moment' where I told myself a few extra lumps and bumps didn't mean I couldn't swim in the Atlantic. My wetsuit was about having fun, not my dress size.
I didn't know at this point the wetsuit was evil.
We got home, my wetsuit and I, and I shook out the neoprene beauty out of the bag and quickly removed my outer garments in an eagerness to try on my new swimming aid. It looked enormous – this should have been my first clue to its satanic properties.
I stretched out my right foot and eased it into the suit. So far so good, my foot slid in easily and the garment moved up my leg. I took my left leg and popped it through the second hole. I lost my balance for a moment, but luckily I was by the bed and fell onto a cushion. I giggled, cuddling my wetsuit to my legs, thinking this was our first humorous memory together.
I stood up again, in my matching undies, with a wetsuit round my knees. I reached down and yanked up.
Then it all started to go wrong.
My calves dangled out of the wetsuit like matchsticks through a toilet roll. But then the whole suit stopped abruptly on my thighs refusing to ease upwards and reach my bikini area.
I think stuck was the word I was searching for.
I didn't see this as a deterrent, instead I saw it as a challenge.
The midrif was glued to my stomach, giving me the appearance of a distressed black whale and standing seemed an impossibility.
BB wandered into the room for a moment, saw my position, snorted and walked out again.
I could see she was to be no help.
Inch by inch I started to return my head back to the skyline. I got to a 90 degree angle and realised I was fast once more, with arms stuck out like a scarecrow and matchstick legs flapping.
I started to feel fear as the devil's grip of the wetsuit began to tighten.
I couldn't decide which way to go - to go down was defeat, upwards impossible. So I did the obvious thing, I reached for the zip to seal my fate.
Clearly wet suits are manufactured by men or flat chested women. The zip reached my chest and screeched to a halt in an angry protest.
Now, I was bent, with a breeze blowing up the holes in my legs, my arms stuck out out and my zip fast.
Truth be told I was starting to ache and my breathing was becoming laboured.
After suffering in this stance for quarter of an hour, I tried to entice my three-year-old to help. Eventually I bribed her with a chocolate bourbon and she agreed to try and tackle the zip. I fell to the bed with an exasperated sigh and lay huddled in the foetal position whilst she yanked at the zip.
"It is hard mummy," she panted whilst tugging and shoving and bruising most of my lower body.
An eternity past until suddenly I heard a rumble and the zipper fell back to my arse. The three-year-old took her foot off my back, rubbed her hands together in satisfaction, grabbed the biscuit and wandered off.
I peeled the wetsuit from my arms, unsuckered it from my stomach and gently climbed out of the super-size trunks.
It now lives in a bag by the door.
I will be content with toe dipping again this summer. Wet suits are evil – that is all.
Jane is a working mum of three and has great hair. One of these things may not be true.
Blogs at: Northern Mum