Saturday, April 25, 2009

The Hayward Plunge? Impossible!




A couple months ago, PP glanced at the front page of the SF Chron and saw a photo of a POOL! How cool was that? How often is a pool on the front page of the newspaper? (Of course, PP would prefer this over the usual horrific news of murders, foreclosures and politics.)

Yet, on closer inspection, this Pool was featured because it was part of FDR’s Public Works Projects from the Depression era. One of the projects was building this gorgeous pool with the high hanger-like ceiling, green tiles on the pool walls, and magical fairy-tale lighting. And best of all, it was indoors.

So, PP pined for this pool, but thought, hell, I’ll never make it to Hayward of all places. Who goes to Hayward to swim when there are so many pools right here in Oakland?

Yet, the pool had been filed away in the back of her mind. So on their Beach Adventure day in Pacifica, she and DHBF took advantage of the once a year 80 degree weather, where she longed to jump into the surf but instead was sitting there under the umbrella, hiding from the sun, like an old person.





What happened? How’d she get here? Why not just jump in and frolic in the surf?

Duh. Too damn cold!

PP felt a little wistful about her lack of cold water adventure at this juncture in her life, but oh well. What’s a Highly Sensitive Kitty to do?


Later, on the way back home, right before they got on the San Mateo Bridge (After a fruitless search for the Swim School that a sign pointed to in Half Moon Bay. Why is it that Half Moon Bay is always half-assed? It seems like a good idea to go there, but then when you do, it’s always disappointing?)




Well, they didn’t find the Swim School, cuz it was Half Moon Bay, and on their way home, PP remembered that they’d have to pass through Hayward to get to Oakland after getting off the bridge.

Could they find the Hayward Plunge popped into her mind?

Of course, she didn’t know where it was. What the lap swimming hours were. How much it cost or any of the essentials, but hey, this is why cell phones might actually come in handy.

DHBF pulled over to the side of the road before getting on the bridge and PP called information, got the Hayward Plunge’s recording that stated the lap hours:5-7 p.m., M-Th. (It was then after 5:30) and the address if you pressed another button. Naturally you couldn’t talk to a person to get directions, but DHBF seemed confident: “If we have the address, I can find it.”
"24716 Mission Blvd": PP copied down from the recorded message.

Okay, but Hayward? It is a big sprawling ugly city. Where the hell is Mission Blvd? DHBF nodded his head, “It’s a main street. I bet 92 crosses it. We’ll find it.”

And off they went. Only to get stuck in horrific traffic (construction under way) after getting off the bridge.




The clock was ticking. Almost 6 o’clock. Even if they did find the pool, they’d never get there in time for lap swimming. 10 minutes to get dressed. At the very least 30 minutes to swim (though PP liked to swim for 45). This meant that they’d have to find the pool by 6:15 or 6:20 at the latest. Otherwise there’d be no swimming in this marvelous 1930’s pool that day.

The traffic crawled. The clock ticked away. 6 :00, 6 :05, 6:10; they were finally off the freeway and in the lovely rush hour traffic of Hayward.

“Maybe today, we’ll just find the pool and then we’ll know where it is for next time,” DHBF tried to soothe PP’s unspoken skepticism around ever making it in time.
“Yeah….maybe…” she murmured.

“What was the name of that street?” DHBF asks, as they crawl through the intersection.
“I can’t tell. There’s no street sign,” PP answers. And there wasn’t. In her usual optimistic paradigm, she thought, hell, that was probably Mission Street, and slumped down in her seat and the traffic came to a standstill at the longest signal in the world.

Sighing, PP glanced out the window at an overweight heavily made-up office worker on her way to Chevy’s in the idling Buick next to them.

Maybe they should just follow her and drown their non-finding-the-Plunge-in-time-sorrows?




“What’s the name of this street? Can you tell?” DHBF interrupted her alcohol infused musings. She craned her neck forward. Was it Mission Blvd?

No, it was some tree street. Acacia Street or Pine Street or Sycamore Street or some such thing. PP can’t really remember now and besides, they were never gonna make it to the pool before lap swim was over so what was the point of continuing on their quest?

Oh those Distorted Thought Patterns!

She should never let them rule…..

Because….......

~To be continued~

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