Jun 17, 2005

Sum Sum Summertime

Montessori is out for the summer, so I took Will out of his part-time child care as well. I started off the season by getting pinkeye in both eyes and twisting my back a little.

Yesterday we rescued some great chaise-lounges from my Dad's. He was going to have the "junk man" take them away before closing on his house. After we clean the heck out of the chaises, which are moldy and dusty, and my eyes and back are all better, I'm going to restart summer.

Summer for us is so all about the pool. Every community around here has its own pool. You have to live within strict geographic limits to join. So ours is, natch, the Swarthmore Swim Club. It's not fancy by any means but it's very pleasant indeed. A friend of mine, who just moved out of Swarthmore to West Chester (to pursue the dream of a large suburban house on a cul de sac, with one whole acre of yard) used to complain that the Swarthmore Swim Club was clique-ish. To which I say, of course it is, it's the Swarthmore Swim Club, for Pete's sake. We go for the pool, and we see a number of people we know, and the number is higher every year, and I really don't care whether there are cliques or not. I don't want to be in a clique myself, but if other people do, that's their problem. There was a time when such things would have bothered me.

Our routine is this: we plop our stuff down on the grass kind of behind the best spots, which are inevitably covered with other people's towels, clothes, newspapers, and other detritus. The boys take their shirts and sandals off, and we all go in the "big" pool (shallow end). Then someone migrates to the baby pool, they go back and forth between the pools, etc. At their ages, 3 and 5, I need to watch them to a certain extent, but I can socialize a little or read something light.

After a while comes the request that I dread: "Can we play Battleship?" The swim club has seen fit to keep lots of board games for the members to use, bless their souls. So one of the boys gets the game, we set it on the towels, and I pretend that we are actually going to play this in a civilized manner, following the rules, until someone wins. Will's too young to focus, but he likes to move the ships around randomly on the board, which is no good. Jack likes to play, and could probably play a whole game, if only he wasn't playing against Will and me. I try to keep things together, but sitting on a towel for a period of time moving little pegs around on a little board that is constantly tipping over gets old. So I try to find a distraction. "Hey, there's Alex! Wouldn't you like to get back in the pool with him?"

Some of the mothers don't go in the water, but my rule is to get completely wet at least once every hour. Otherwise, what's the point? My mother had a helmet-like "hairdo" that she got every week at the hairdresser, and so she never put her head underwater. You couldn't splash anywhere near her, either. It was hard to for all of us to live with her tenous, fragile hairstyle. I believe I think of her every time I dunk my head under.

Another joke for you, this time from Will:

What did the turtle say to the banana?


1 comment:

Scrivener said...

I must admit, I am basically just a big overgrown kid when it comes to the pool in the summer. Not only do I get wet, I pretty much spend the whole time in the pool, mostly just goofing around in the water with the kids.

Battleship, huh? You know, it hadn't even dawned on me that the kids might have the concentration to play that now. Maybe I'll try with Ella when we get a chance. She's been wanting to play card games of late--lots of War and some Crazy 8s and Old Maid. I guess I had underestimated her because it wouldn't have dawned on me to play card games with her yet if she hadn't pushed to do it.