An Evening Dip in the Pool
I don’t know what it is, but there is something different between taking a dip in a pool at night than going for a swim during the day. It may be because you’re supposed to be indoors and getting ready for bed and partaking in a daytime activity after the sun has retired for the day just seems like you are breaking the rules. It’s not really a loud environment. Furthermore, even though you’re not really whispering, you’re still talking in low voices in order to keep the people who enforce the “No Swimming after Midnight” rule posted at the gate from hauling you off to hotel jail or someplace equally mysterious.
We didn’t care, however. After our dining experience at the Conch Republic, we had decided a dip in the hot tub was in order. We quickly swapped our dining attire for bathing suits, grabbed an adult beverage or two and headed down to the dark pool area.
Most hotel pools come with two rules. The first is no swimming after eleven or twelve. The second is no glass around the pool. I intended on breaking both of those rules. I didn’t even obey these rules when I was a child and saw no point in starting to now that I was an adult, especially the no glass rule. Whisky does not belong in a plastic Solo cup.
As we were growing up, my parents would take overnight trips and never go anywhere. Well, that’s not exactly true. We would check in to a local hotel, avoiding the telephone and people knocking on our door. My father owned his own subcontractor company and when things became chaotic and he needed a break, they would take us to a hotel and while Dad sipped his Jack and Coke, my sister and I would turn into prunes in the hotel pool. We would stay out way past the curfew posted, but as long as we didn’t make too much noise, no one ever chased us away. These are some of my fondest memories growing up. My parents would be sitting around one of the tables, chatting and relaxing while they watched Laurie and me making laps or racing each other from one end to the other.
That is what swimming at night means, something special that you are allowed to do even though it’s forbidden. I thought of these memories as I sat there in the hot tub and three young kids wandered into the pool area, excited to be up past bedtime and able to swim. Vacations should be about breaking some of the rules you have to follow back at home. It means tossing the schedule and bedtimes out the window and embracing the moment instead.
As the night began to settle down and we sat around the hot tub enjoying the cool evening mixed with the warmth of friendship, I thought back to when I did the same with my parents and when we did it with our children. We sat and mingled as we sipped our beverages, enjoying the moment while planning the next. Some sat in the water while others perched near the edge, but we were all together, savoring the laughter as memories were made that would carry us to the next adventure.
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