In the days of my youth, once the final school bell rang for summer, my days were spent in the pool.
I grew up in the San Fernando Valley of Southern California (like, omigawd totally – hair toss, gum snap), where temperatures regularly reached 95 degrees. Everyone had a pool in their backyard and that’s where we spent the dog days of summer – from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
(Although GrammaJ has reminded me that this only lasted until I was about 10. Once I reached the wizened old age of double digits, my nose was to be found stuck in a book as I curled up in the fabulously air conditioned house. GrammaJ constantly told me to “put the book down and go outside.”)
My parents’ pool is always kept at a toasty warm temperature – my kind of water. You know, the kind that rivals tropical waters? My brother and I would throw the pool broom across the center and voilia! we had a water volleyball court. We would take boogie boards and create a wave pool to “surf” across (much to my parents’ dismay as the water sploshed out of the pool by the gallon). We had a slide for a time – where we tempted the fates of bodily injury by trying to zoom down on kickboards, dropping into the deep end as the kickboard smashed against the stucco wall.
Cannon balls, dives, belly flops. Freestyle, butterfly, doggie paddle. Floating, relaxation and exercise. When I think of summer, I can feel the SoCal heat gleaming off the brick boarder and the tickle of drips running down my legs as I’d run to towel myself off before diving back in. I can smell the chlorine that would cling to my hair and swimsuit.
So it was with great glee that our family trooped over to the pool for the muppets first frolic.
I have been giddily awaiting this moment since we opened the gift from Nurse Susan and Nurse June at the muppets’ first birthday party: swim trunks, swim shirts and sandals. (The sand toys are still eagerly awaiting our first beach excursion – we’re holding out for the boys to move past the whole eating sand/dirt phase…)
Unlike the sun worshiping days of yore, our boys were dressed for the water by covering them in gear to hide them from the sun. Trunks, SPF 50 shirt, pasty white with California Baby sunscreen and wrestled into sun hats. My dear friend Amber had a floatie that she’d used with her little guy. So one muppet was held, while the other floated around the pool covered by the sunshade.
Search seemed a little wary at first; this was surprising to me because he’s always been a big fan of bath time – even from his very first tub scrub in his NICU cabana. We quickly realized the water was not tropical. Someone didn’t heat the pool. Eek!
We’ve ordered our own little man floaties and are looking forward to our upcoming pool party. As the boys grow up, we’ll need to find friends with pools to create our own summertime traditions. Regular trips to Hawaii seem like a grand plan to me…