Name: The Senile Swimmer. Or: The swimming enthusiast who enters Hong Kong waters every day of the year, come rain or shark. Age: Wrinkly, and not just because of all that exposure to water. It's a fact that the sort of people to be found ploughing through the waves at an ungodly hour of the morning tend to be elderly. When interviewed by newspapers who decide to do a 'colour' piece, 70-year-old Mrs Chan of Sai Kung claims to have been swimming every morning at the same beach for 50 years but, funnily, no one ever seems to have seen her before she became an old dear in an old-fashioned black one-piece. I mean, you never see a 28-year-old daily swimmer interviewed, do you? Closely related to: The dotty old geezers you see leaping into London's Serpentine or some Moscow river on New Year's Day. Surely they only get away with doing something that's patently daft simply because they're old and no one's going to turn around and say, 'What a bunch of nutters.' Favoured Hong Kong locales: Anywhere there's a beach that isn't properly patrolled by lifeguards. These determined oldsters are often mistaken for dead dolphins due to the fact they wallow rather than swim, they employ that extraordinary crawl stroke that requires a slow-motion turn of the body and then a slap of the water every 30 seconds. Favoured accessories: swimming hats made in the days before manufacturers had really perfected the art of making rubber. Goggles from a similar era. Favoured warm-up: Anything that looks daft. And preferably something that involves splashing water on to one's torso while cackling like a loon. Occupational hazards: Almost too numerous to list. There are some people who have never swum in Hong Kong waters and probably never will, so how on earth does one accept a person who does it every day of their own free will. But briefly, the major hazards are: (1) sharks. I know the statistics say you're more likely to get run over by a bus than eaten by a shark, but I know which way I'd rather go. And (2) pollution, hideous water quality is, one would have thought, something of a drawback when it comes to taking a refreshing dip. Famous predecessors: The hardy types who used to take part in the annual swim across the harbour. Can you imagine swimming in that? Not to mention the fact that these days a cross-harbour swim would consist of diving off the pier on one side and promptly becoming embedded in the reclaimed shoreline of the other. Advice: Get out the water! If you do feel compelled to get out of bed ridiculously early for some exercise, try tai chi in the park with the other OAPs. The only sharks that will get you there are property speculators cruising through on their way to the latest land auction.