Observations from the Pool

The pool.

I hear angels sing when I even think of it.
The Tree House had a good pool – it wasn’t over-the-top fancy, but it also was fantastically under-utilized by the majority of the building, leaving me and a small group of smarties to soothe away our mid-August urban angst without jockeying for position too much. (My “position” was under the big old tree that drooped in from off the street over the wall, shading my pastiness pale loveliness from the direct sun.)
Granted – since Jr. joined the scene pool time has two different versions – the one where he is with me and we have a giant bag of puddle-jumpers (Google it, until two days ago I had no idea these things had an actual name, but it is THE toddler pool accessory to sport, fo’ sho,) and graham crackers and SPF 1000 (ok, that’s always been in my bag – I really am pretty much translucent;) and the one where I am having “me” time, which involves magazines and a family-sized single-serving of some sort of “sangria” that I mixed up with random crap from the kitchen and cheap chardonnay.

Regardless – the pool is VERY important. So when we set out to drag the whole part-and-parcel of the fam out here, I impressed upon Alyssa-the-wonder-realtor that finding a subdivision with a pool was muy importante.
She came through, bless here realtor-y little heart, and we have a great pool, with HEAPS of shade for our chalky selves, complete with baby pool for Jr. (I know, I know, THE PEE! THE SNOT! THE GAWD-KNOWS-WHAT-ELSE! But seriously, he’s two, he likes a smaller body of water. I am down with that.)
That being said – the view from under the pergola at a suburban subdivision pool is a far cry from my shaded corner of urban respite, where the gossipy gay couple from the 8th floor floated off last night’s hangover face down on rafts in the deep end, and the just-starting-out married kids from the 1st floor shared generic ciggys under the perpetually-about-to-break umbrella at the aging picnic table.

What an eyeful I have now.

My first thought after plunking my towel down to stake claim on a lounger during a solo recon trip last summer was “Has the mom population of my hometown always been so taunt, tight, tanned and toned!?”
(Holy ta-tas, mamas- You Go Girls!!)

Packs of tweens and teens migrate daily to the suburban oaisis – I feel like a zoologist observing their interactions from behind my giant sunglasses- or like there should be National Geographic documentary narration dubbed in: “Here we get a close up view of a small pack of middle schoolous tween-angstivous as they undertake their complex social interactions. This group comes to the water each day seeking pizza and a chance to cool down. We observe the group, but when they are in herd formation, interaction can be risky.”

The Mr. does not pool. At least not at this moment in his life. Growing up in the ‘burbs of Houston, he pooled it up plenty in his youth, but currently it is not his thing.
This would irritate me more, except I want to reach out and flick some of the dads I see at the pool with their families, much of the time. The entrance of said family into the pool area pretty much says it all: Here comes dad – 50 feet in front of everyone, carrying nothing, not looking back at all, just walking. Trailing behind might be an older kid, carrying his or her own towel and water bottle. Way behind that is mom – holding the hand of a toddler wearing one water-wing who REALLY wants to run/jump/something else dangerous. On top of her is piled every possible thing that the entire family might need for the day; towels and duckie floaties and a picnic basket and goggles and sunblock and hats and so much other crap that you mistake her for a pack mule as she wrestles her load along, clinging to toddler’s hand and drilling holes in the back of her far-off husband’s neck.
It’s cool honey, you go golf it up. I’ll skip that scene, thanks.

Incidentally, tattoos go over even better here than at the rec center. Do not be alarmed, neighbors!
I just want to cool my own kiddo off in the pee baby pool and do all I can to assure that he understands the awesome that is the pool.

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