It was a Saturday the 16th of July 1960 and I was on my way to Bigeonnette to get the French gals and go swimming in Chateauneuf at the olympic size pool.
One gal was riding behind me on my moped and the other gal was on her moped as we headed toward Chateauneuf. I recall the pool was about a two mile trip. I still remember a red colored gym bag hooked on the other moped that held the gals swim suits and whatever else they had for the journey.
My towel and swim trunks were in one of my saddle bags. Soon we were parked close to the pool entrance where we paid a small fee to go in. The locker and dressing rooms were located downstairs and when changed one would climb up some stairs to the pool area.We picked out a table near the patio fence some twenty feet from the open pool side. For some reason I did not bring my camera along on this day. We all just sat there having some lemonade and talking before us three dashed to the pool side and jumped in feet first. I didn't see many swimming caps on the women and the two gals did not wear them. After a short swim we got out and enjoyed the sunshine along with some more bottled lemonade which was sold there at the pool.
I was not a diver or a very good swimmer at that point in time but I would sometimes dive in. From the pool side or the low spring board I would dive head first but from the higher boards it was always feet first.
After a few pool side dives the gals wanted me to go off the highest platform dive. After some deliberation on my part and with the gals prodding me I said I would do it. Up the side ladders I went and finally I stood atop the tallest platform dive.
At the very edge I looked down and in one leap forward and feet first I hit the water. When I started to climb the ladder to exit the pool my swim trunks felt strange. Some were pointing to me and smiling as I made my way to my seat. Needless to say my rear end was showing big time.
The green, black, and white swim trunks that I had bought from the AFEX in late May now had a gaping hole, being ripped from the crouch along the rear seam up to the waist band. The gals made a joke about my rear end hanging out for everyone to see. Of course things like that in France were seen as no big deal.
With my towel around my waist we sat and talked and laughed for another hour or so enjoying the beautiful sunshine before leaving the pool that day. After we all had dried and dressed we headed back toward the summer house on the mopeds.
The gals fixed a nice meal with some items purchased at the small grocery store across the street. After the meal we just sat outside and enjoyed being together for that day. A few hours later I was ready to go back to the base. With hugs and goodbyes said, I headed out on my moped. I would see them again in two days.
The next day I was on duty for 24 hours and wouldn't be off the base at all. For my other pool and lake swims I had to visit the AFEX and purchase another pair of trunks. I think all they had then for me was a solid red pair.
This was my one and only leap from the high platform dive at the Chateauneuf Olympic swimming pool. There were more swims at that pool but no more high dives for me.
Here's a small tidbit about this story. I had the base laundry repair my ripped trunks and used them again when home for good at my high school outdoor pool in the summer of 1961. No, I did not wear them swimming again, while I was at Dreux Air Base.