Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Mystery solved + pool ettiquette

Jon and I went to a wedding a couple of weeks ago, and when we got home, there was a somewhat hectic vibe in my bedroom. The room looked much as it had when we'd left the house, although my bedside lamp was moved to the left by a few inches, and a few things were out of place, but generally what struck me was a feeling that there had been a lot of activity in my room while we'd been gone. I asked the kids what they'd been up to, but they all said, "Oh, no, we didn't go into your room."

Then I found these pictures on Drama Queen's camera:

We joined a pool club, something I've been thinking of doing for years. Charlottesville has decent public pools, but they are so crowded during the day, it's ridiculous. I was sick of arranging my whole life around when the Washington Park Pool was likely to be less crowded. I was also sick of driving all the way over there, only to be turned away because someone had just pooped in the pool. I also didn't like having to park my towels on scorching concrete, because even when the pool was less crowded, there were almost never seats under the umbrellas. So we joined a pool and it is good.

I am still trying to figure out the whole scene at this pool, which is very kid-oriented. I'm observing the customs of the pool mothers, and it seems that the thing to do, if you want a relaxing time in the pool, is have a fairly young child who wants to swim in the 4' pool, so that you can float lazily around on a noodle and pretend you are "supervising" your small child, when actually you are enjoying yourself. My kids don't want to swim in the 4' pool. They want the big pool and they are too old to have their mom hovering around them, yet it seems that it isn't done for mothers to float lazily in the 4' pool if they are unaccompanied by a small child. The other option is to swim laps in the big pool, but I *hate* swimming for exercise. Hate, hate, hate it.

A couple of years ago, Washington Park pool was open at 6:00am every day, and in a moment of insanity, I decided try swimming instead of running. I have virtually no upper body strength, and after something like six laps my arms were so weak I could hardly lift myself out of the pool.

Back when I did crew, our coach arranged swimming practice in the winter so we could stay in shape when we couldn't be out on the water. Co-ed swimming practice, with mixed-sex teams for relay races, and a more sadistic training regimen does not exist, believe me. I think I have PTSD from that experience.

So anyway, I hate swimming for exercise, and frankly, I don't like parading around in front of people wearing a bathing suit, although all the other mothers look pretty much the same as me, but still. What I've ended up doing is pleading with Mr. McP to hang out with me so I can get in the water and swim about for a bit and cool off and then go back to my book.


  1. I actually once did the City pools' "Swim the English Channel" challenge a few years ago. 756 laps, which is the equivalent of swimming from Dover to Calais. It took me 12 months, but I did it. I haven't been back to the pool since then.

  2. We live in a condo complex with a nice pool. But now that we are *ahem* over 50, we don't enjoy the pool on weekends anymore.

    Too many screaming teenagers and too many little kids in the pool with no parents paying attention. The parents are all sitting on lounge chairs chatting on their cell phones.

    We almost had to rescue a little dude last Sunday.

  3. I am bummed I wont run into you at the WAPA (I think that is a good abbreviation for Washington Park). My mom told me last night they really enjoyed the pool yesterday with the boys- but the busloads of kids havent started coming in yet.
    The other day at WaPa Chris suggested I go in during adult swim- no one was in. So I did, it was awesome. I heartily recommend demonstrating some mommy independence and swimming without your kids nearby!
    Have fun.

  4. Every time we've tried to go to WAPA, it gets closed down because of someone pooping in the pool. Not cool.

  5. BUSTED!!! That's funny.

    Oh, pool etiquette is something else. Striking the balance between relaxing and responsible, always a trick.