Dear Readers: Please read the preceding blog entry first, Missing Person, for proper chronological soap opera sequence.
“Hey, Sandy,” PP calls out to the prone form lying on the top deck of Utopia, Oaktown. “I found DL!
“Yeah,” DL laughs as she follows PP into the sauna, “ It only took a week.”
Sandy chuckles. “Very good. Where was she?”
“In an Alternate Universe,” PP jokes.
“Really?” Sandy shifts, squirts herself with a spray of water.
“Yeah, bet you didn’t know there was one at the Berkeley Y,” PP teases.
“Actually, it wouldn’t surprise me,” Sandy answers. “But seriously where was she?”
“In the upstairs women’s sauna. Did you know there was another women’s locker room, upstairs?”
“That’s right,” Sandy nods, knowingly. It does occur to PP to ask why the hell she hadn't mentioned another sauna to her last week when she'd been so panicked about DL's whereabouts. Chalk it up to Heaterization Disorientation?
“I had no idea,” PP shakes her head. “I’ve been going there for years and no one ever told me there was a Parallel Universe at the Berkeley Y.”
“The funny thing is,” DL interjects, “is that I did think of it. That there might be more than one sauna in that place. And when I asked this other woman who was in the sauna with me if there was another one she just looked at me like I was crackers and said, ‘No.’”
“Really?” Sandy says, “That’s odd.”
“Yeah, isn’t it,” PP agrees. “I wonder why she lied to DL about another Sauna? If she hadn’t, maybe none of this woulda happened.”
“No, you’re right. It could’ve been avoided,” Sandy agrees.
“I think the Lying Sauna Woman was part of the Evil Parallel Universe Cohort that didn’t want me to find DL or for DL to tell any of her friends about the other sauna. Then she could have it all to herself.”
”It was icky,” DL murmurs. “I didn’t know what to do. I was upstairs with a towel wrapped around me wondering where is PP where is PP I wonder if there’s another sauna and so when I asked this woman and she said no there wasn’t well.... I.... was very confused.....”
“I bet.” Sandy nods. “But tell, me, PP how did you end up finding her if you didn’t know the other sauna was up there?”
PP paused for a moment, trying to remember. What had she done? They’d told her at the front desk that they didn’t have a PA system and so she’d been completely flummoxed by this, not knowing what to do, when oh yeah that’s right, she’d mentioned that she was supposed to meet her friend in the sauna and then the Big Pasty Clerk had asked her which sauna.
“There’s more than one sauna?” she’d asked, astounded.
“Well, yeah, there’s one upstairs and one downstairs. Which one were you supposed to meet your friend in?”
PP had shook her head, “I had no idea that there were two saunas. I was just in the downstairs one..... I guess that’s what happened. My friend is in the upstairs one.”
And sure enough, when PP had hurried up the 3 flights of stairs, her bare feet cold, her wet hair tangling, her panic beginning to subside, she arrived breathless into the Women’s Locker room. Upstairs.
A parallel universe.
PP glanced through the rows of lockers where a door was open into a weight room, the clanking and banging adding to her disorientation. It was too bright. Yellow. Eerily empty....
And then voila! there was DL wandering around in a daze, her eyes bright behind her wired rimmed glasses, a towel wrapped around her waist, “OH MY GOD!” she’d exclaimed.
“Here you are! I had no idea there was an upstairs women’s’ locker room!” PP had cried, so happy and relieved to see DL.
“Where were you?” DL asked, the panic melting off her face.
DL broke into a grin, “Upstairs, Downstairs.”
“Yeah, something like that,” PP laughed, her having to go to the bathroom suddenly hitting her hard.
“Okay, well, I’m so glad I found you,” she’d said, “Meet you downstairs?”
”Yeah, yeah....just give me a few minutes. I’ll be down after I put some clothes on.”
After PP finishes telling the story, Sandy laughs.“If you’d peeked behind her and seen Erica Kane working out, then you’d really know you were in a Parallel Universe!”
And it’s true. If La Kane had been there in her little black stretch pants and designer sneakers, lifting weights with her perfect make-up, it wouldn’t really have surprised PP at all.
Parallel Universes. Missing Persons. Sauna Liars.
It was all just another day in the life of a swimmer. In an Alternate Universe, that is....