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Crouching Tiger, Gawking Cougar

5.20.2010 | Ladner, Motivation, My Blog

I love going to the swimming pool! I mean, it’s the best thing EVER! I wish I could go every single day, and spend lots and lots of time ogling. I MEAN SWIMMING! …and spend lots and lots of time SWIMMING.

I went swimming for the second time yesterday, and I have to say this: that’s freaking hard work! I could barely swim a length let alone attempt an entire lap. It was a very humbling experience given that I used to be able to swim a mile. But then again, at that age swimming wasn’t nearly as fatiguing given that I didn’t have to walk around the deck with my gut sucked in. That’s very tiring, you know.

Although I was fully intent on sauntering out of the change room and over to the lanes to dive in and start my swim, as I walked in I kind of freaked out, and simply made a bee-line for the hot tub where I could hide.

“I meant to do that. This is why I’m here. I’m… ummm… recovering from… surgery for my… uhhh… liver, and the doctor advised me to… to… to sit in the hot tub at the public pool!”  Yes. That’s it. Totally believable.

But here’s the thing about the hot tub – you simply cannot sit in it by yourself and look at all composed. You quickly realize that you have nothing to do but people watch. And then you realize that the pool is full of elderly women participating in the Osteo-fit class, and that you are now stuck watching bobbing flowered swim caps and listening to the Beach Boys.

However, as a welcome distraction, there are the (far too young) attractive lifeguards wandering around the pool deck, and you can make quite a game of looking at them. It was really quite exciting when I made eye contact with one of them, and he started to come over to the hot tub.

FYI: It is very difficult to be coquettish when one is looking like a wet rat in a black sausage casing. Why don’t they put bubble bath in that hot tub?

Anyway, the (far too young) attractive lifeguard came over my way, and as I smiled at him, he smiled back. ‘Direct hit!’ I thought to myself, preparing for the inevitable pick-up line he was about to give. But then he bent down and picked up a piece of wet paper towel that I had tracked in from the change room. Smooth, Robyn, reeeeeal smooth.

Ok, so now I realized that I no longer had a choice. I had to get out of that hot tub at some point. I mean really, you can’t sit in that hot tub for too long, especially when all you can do is either gawk at the (far too young) lifeguard, or spend precious moments promising yourself that you’ll never buy a flowered swim cap.

Ok…. here we go…

-Pull bathing suit out of butt.

-Suck in gut.


-Confidently walk over to the lanes, trying not to dwell on the nubbly, wet, fungus-deck.

-Bend down, splash water from the pool onto yourself. Try to muffle squeaky scream when you realize just how cold that water is after raisin-izing yourself in the hot tub for 30 minutes. Stand and act like an Olympic swimmer as you perch on the pool edge preparing to dive in.

-Realize that you have no idea how to dive, and now have to attempt to belly flop with grace.

-Shake hands out, take two steps back, pretend to stretch out shoulders pre-dive.

-Slip on wet kickboard, flail arms, turn backward and fall head first into the pool, completely destroying all hopes of keeping your hair dry and your dignity intact. Swear at yourself for not buying a flowered swim cap from the lobby gift shop.

-Come to surface. Secretly show gratitude for the overly-loud Osteo-fit class’ Beach Boys music, which perfectly covered the sound of your entrance into the water.

I spent the next 45 minutes doing lengths of the pool, mostly with the kickboard, and marveling at how tiring this whole swimming thing is. However, I should expect to be tired after 45 minutes of exercise, so it’s really not that bad. Then I actually looked at the clock and saw that I had, in fact, been in the pool for about 12 minutes.

Swimming is not easy. It is not the fun little way to spend time that it once was. How on earth did Ali and I swim ALL DAY when we were kids?! We were probably hopped up on sugar or something.

Nevertheless, I did enjoy my swim day hour minutes, and look forward to going back. Maybe I can convince Ali to join me next time…




I agree. Public pools’ hot tub should come with bubble bath, some quality essential oils, hot stone massage on the side *optional*, fine cheeses and champagne.. that’s such a winner, right? I am almost certain that will singlehandly popularize the sport. You’re most welcome, Swimming.


You’re a bloody GENIUS!