Tutorial on Maryland's Pools
First, there are local pools everywhere. Seriously. Every little neighborhood has one. Our local pool is a mere 1.4 miles by car, 1.1 miles by bike. This will be important when all four of us can bike there easily (c'mon Ollie!). Our closest county pool, on the other hand, doesn't even have an outdoor pool, so um, no thanks. Plus, it's not an easy bike ride away.
Second, you have to join the pools. This is an issue because you can't just go without a member family taking you. We couldn't be just drop-in, unattended guests on those extra hot, extra muggy days (like pretty much every day in June so far). So we had to join.
Third, they are ridiculously expensive to join. In order to pay the fees, we had to save all year. I exaggerate a little; it's not that much, but to pay it all at once is something I'd rather avoid.
Fourth, usually swim team and swim lessons are included with your membership. If Rhett could actually swim, he'd be on their pre-team this summer. Ollie is still too little for swim team. However, they're both signed up for (and started earlier this week!) the free group swim lessons.
Fifth, there's a big social component to them. There are BBQs, movie nights, men's swim nights, women's swim nights, and that doesn't even cover all the swim team events. I have a feeling this will be a much bigger deal once both boys are on swim team.
Sixth, they will Change. Your. Life for the summer. For reals people. Remember how much I HATE Maryland summers? I'm pretty sure I've mentioned it before. But since the pool opened Memorial Day weekend, we've been there probably a dozen times. Even if just for an hour, we'll go. Why is it such a life-changer? Because it makes the heat and the humidity and the bugs bearable. To be wearing only a swimsuit, hanging out poolside or in the pool, life is good.
What I don't know about this pool-centered life.
First, do I have to wash my hair every time I get it wet in the pool? Because if so, UGH.
Second, do I have to wash our swimsuits and towels every time we swim? Because if so, UGH. But if just drying them in the dryer or on the shower rack works, YESSSS. (Remember, this is not Utah. Things do NOT dry outside in our water-laden air.)
Third, do I have to wear make up this summer? Because if I have to re-apply it every day after it gets washed away in the pool, UGH.
Fourth, how do I break into the pool's social scene? Our pool has tons of families, many of whom we see every day. But I'm shy in these situations (and I was super shy when wearing a soft, ugly, white neck collar), so I am just struggling. Do I even want to bother? Can I just be nice and smile? Or do I have to actually try to talk to them and learn their names and their kids' names?
Remember how last summer I had these enormous plans because I didn't know what to do with the boys all day? Yeah, no need this year. Here's what our schedule looks like this summer:
6:30 a.m.: Boys wake up, eat breakfast, do chores
9:00 a.m.: Do something like library visit, playground visit, hike
12:00 p.m.: Lunch
12:08 p.m.: Go to the pool
5:30 p.m.: Dinner
So easy, right? Something small in the morning and then during the hot, gross, despicably muggy afternoons, we're at the pool. The boys are happy, the adults are happy, the living is good. I think I'm gonna like it there.