Meltdown –Part II (Left Brain Readers May Want to Read Previous Entry First)

“How’re you doing?” Handsome, (too handsome?) dark-haired young man (Isn’t everyone young now?) grins over at PP, who’s been soaking in the hot tub waiting on a lane. So far, the lanes at the Mill Valley Community Center are all full, but not too full. Just full enough to be unenticing.

So how was she doing? Still a little cranky, but better than an hour ago when she’d been standing morosely in front of the empty Marin YMCA pool.

But Handsome Friendly Man doesn’t need an answer from her. Cause he’s doing fine. “This is a perfect way to spend a Friday afternoon. Now all I need is a beer,” he chuckles, not really looking at PP anymore.

DHBF leans over to PP and mutters something about Whiskey and Hot tubs. Or was it Whiskey and Lakes? There’s some lake in Scotland that’s full of Whiskey?

Two boys clamber in the tub next to PP, begin to fiddle with her fins behind her on the deck. She turns around and thinks she doesn’t glare at them, but she probably did. They shy away, stricken as she grabs her stuff and pulls it toward her just as Mom admonishes them, “Those aren’t yours. They belong to someone else.”
PP laughs as the two stare at her, petrified.“Guess I scared them,” she jokes.
“Yes you did,” Mom glares at her.

Damn. What the hell were kids doing in the hot tub anyway? Oh yeah, this was Mill Valley. Kids rule here. She watches the screaming group of children frolicking in half the pool set aside for them leaving only 3 lanes for lap swimmers.

Lap swimming at the Mill Valley Community Center takes second place to kids. Just like China. Only in China kids really ruled. There were NO lap lanes. She just had to swim around all the screaming kids. It was a kid obstacle course. Needless to say, PP didn’t get much swimming in.

This was kinda true now at the MVCC. But aha! Someone was getting out of one of the lap lanes. PP hurriedly grabs her stuff and heads over. Watches as woman with one of those skin-colored nose plugs stops at the wall. PP has always thought these plugs were so gross; how did they even work? But supposes that it must help some poor souls who for whatever reason inhale water up their nostrils. Now she dangles her finned feet into the water to stop her.

"Can I split the lane with you?” she asks Nose Plug Woman, who smiles spacey at her, “Sure.”

And so she’s off. And it’s okay. NPW gets out, and Tan Scrawny Guy gets in. He’s splashy, but there’s only the two of them. And then he gets out and Equipment Man gets in. It seems that no one swims for very long here in MV. Must be the lure of the Whisky Hot Tub.

Yet, it all works out. Though there is that subtle ‘class’ thing going on. PP felt it with the Mother Glare, and feels it again in the locker room after her shower. She’s got her stuff all over the bench—it’s small and narrow, but no one else is around at the moment. A middle aged white woman rumbles in with her roller suitcase, sighing heavily. Sees PP’s stuff and stops, stares, smiles at her, “Can I sit down here?” she asks pointing at all of PP’s stuff.

Why the hell does she want to sit EXACTLY there? PP wonders and this must have shown on her face cuz Suitcase Must Sit Down Woman pauses and then rumbles to the next row. “Oh that’s okay,” she echoes out. “There’s room here.”

Yeah. There was always room there, PP thinks. Again, it’s that subtle “Class Entitlement” thing going on. No one at the Oakland Y woulda asked her to move all of her stuff if there were other places to go. They’d just smile, say ‘How y’all doin' today?' and then head for an empty spot.

What is it about some people who think that the world is all theirs? Maybe it’s not Class. Maybe it’s just personality.

Or maybe it’s just PP’s HSK (Highly Sensitive Kitty) disorder in overdrive this afternoon. After the disappointment at the Marin Y and the ‘fight’ with DHBF, she just wasn’t in the mood.

PP grins to herself. Yeah, this was it. And actually, like she’d predicted, she did feel much better after her swim. Sure there'd been kids in the hot tub, crowded lap lanes and locker room power trips, but overall, it'd been worth it. The restorative magic of swimming triumphs once again.

Now if only she could find that Lake full of Whiskey! Then all of her former crankiness would definitely be drowned!


Ian said…
(Sung in a hearty chorus by a brace of pickled teuchters missing their home on the Mull of Kintyre, while staggering down Byres Road, Glasgow after the pubs have closed...)

Campbeltown Loch, I wish ye were whiskey...
Campbelltown Lock, Och Aye...
Oh Campbeltown Loch I wish you were whiskey...
I would drink ye dry!

(see Wikipedia for more)

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