December 6, 2005

The Town Petri-Dish

I went to the YMCA this morning so Pixie could get a break from me and I could do the same. Their pool is regularly heated to about 90 degrees and usually pretty empty so it's a nice way to spend an hour thinking about nothing at all. Except it's not always empty. There is the 50-something Bulgarian guy in the speedo with the huge stomach and hairy back. There is Zora the 80 year old, east-european babcha who scares the living daylights out of Pixie when she comes up from the water with her monsterous goggles and black cap on to say hello. And of course the myriad of Helens, and Francines and Esters who take up 1/2 the pool doing "water aerobics" which must be really above my head because to me it appears they are burning about .5 calories an hour.

As much as I try to focus on my lane and count my laps, I always end up staring with underwater fascination as the immense, hairy man I'm sharing my lane with comes fearfully close to swipping the Helens with his reckless strokes. I have to remind myself to keep focused on the lane markers as I lose count of my laps yet again. Then there are the times when there is a swimming lesson in an adjoining lane. The pool must be about 14 feet deep but that doesn't stop parents from signing up their little lovies for an hour of pure torture once a week with a private "instructor." The lessons mainly consist of the poor child clinging desparetly to any part of the instructors body they can manage while the parent watches boredly from the side. All variety of lures are used to tempt the kid to release his grip but rarely are effective. When swimming next to such a child, is it really possible to focus on counting my mile when 3 feet away, dear little Johnny is pleading for his life?

But I don't mind. I probably end up swimming a few extra laps, but there really is nothing more comical than getting to see all these random people underwater and wearing next to nothing every few days. Even though I go swimming for the solitude of the experience, I admit, I would rather not do it alone. The locker room - now that's another story. Would somebody PLEASE get that woman a towel?


Mary B said...

wow sarah, graphic!

Anonymous said...

How about the view of a class of pregnant water aerobic students pacing and bouncing in the pool taken from under the water?

Its all I could think about in my own pregnant aerobics class