Monday, July 14, 2008

Summers past and present

I love summer. Bring on the heat, it doesn't bother me. While growing up I spent summers in the water, usually at Rainbow Gardens. My Dad worked swing shift so he was home during the day. He loved the water as much as we girls did, although for different reasons. He mostly just liked to swim while I liked to have fun with friends and chase the boys. I think those carefree days continued into my junior high years even though Dad stopped going long before that.

I found this photo of the Rainbow Garden pool in Zeus' yearbook so I know that it was taken prior to 1956 (sorry, Zeus). It looked basically the same during the 60's when I hung out there. Rainbow also had an indoor pool where we swam in the winters after bowling on Saturday mornings. You can't see them, but there were also two in-ground trampolines where all the hot, athletic guys would do flips and twists to impress the girls. Oh yeah, we were impressed. And lest I forget, the lifeguards provided some delicious eye candy as well. Through the doors at the far end of the pool was a ballroom. A couple of times a month a local rock band would come in during the day and play for a few hours. I can still hear those Beach Boys, Rolling Stones and Beatles tunes being played as loud as they could get with the electric guitars and huge amplifiers.

Sunblock? No way. Oil, and lots of it was used to get those deep, dark tans. Without a doubt those long days soaking up the rays contributed to the lovely patterns of spots that now adorn my arms, legs and chest.

Enough of the stroll down memory lane. Rainbow Gardens has now morphed into a huge gift shop and restaurant. The outdoor pool area is now a warehouse for all kinds of imports. If you go there (yes, it's worth the trip) you can still smell the chlorine that has permeated through the old buildings. The original shiny black and white tiles are still on the restaurant floors and you might flinch at the faint odor of mold in the restrooms. Oh, the memories that come flooding back! Ever tried mustard on your popcorn?

Fast forward to the 80's. Athena and Eris spent their early summer days at a different local pool doing much the same thing as I did, chasing boys and ogling the lifeguards.

Now, forward again to 2008. For the last four years we have enjoyed our summers at that same pool, soaking in the sun (now slathered in sunblock, of course) and watching the kids have a ball doing exactly what I did as a kid. The grandkids all swim like fish. We adults mostly just get in and out long enough to stay cool, except of course during the newly instituted "adult swim time", a 15 minute period twice a day where all those under 18 are forced to sit on the sides and watch the clock move oh, so slowly.

Summer is half over and already I am sad to know it will end in six weeks.

To be continued.......



Eris said...

I love Love LOVE adult swim time!!

Casidub said...

Man. You looked just like Dory. I'm pretty sure that was you...the taller girl...

Numismatist Facts said...

Nope. I'm the younger one in the bikini.

Karen said...

The photo of you, your sister, and parents is great! It looks as if your mom is squinting, not scowling ;-) You were such a cutie in the bikini. The photo of Rainbow Gardens outdoor pool is awesome! It's difficult to imagine that it was once there.

I think it's so great that you and your kids and grandkids have such a special time at the pool. Special memories for a lifetime.

Daybreak*Dawning said...

What a little cutie ;-), me, I'm scared to get my face wet in the shower! Thanks for sharing your thoughts, and can't wait to send your blog to my friend Joan. I pick up every penny I see but she has great luck!