Sunday, August 13, 2017

The Sunday Memory Drawer - Lounging By The Pool

So I just completed a summer week at my Hastings-Yonkers border apartment and things were a little wistful.  I am trying to figure out how much longer I will keep it and boast of this very nice, but growing-more-expensive bi-coastal existence.  Indeed, I had the unit renovated five years ago with the idea of putting it on the market.   You see how far I got.

Yes, it is tougher to afford this luxury today, but I do love having this little oasis in the Lenoir Nature Preserve.   My view from the terrace, which covers the length of the apartment, is nothing but leafy trees in the summer and snow-covered branches in the winter.  What is not to like?

I've had this place for 24 years and, statistically, probably have spent less than ten years of nights there.  I've been there through all sorts of blizzards and heat waves and rainstorms and blackouts.   For the snowy days when I was cooped up there for several days in a row, there was a certain decadence being able to do some laps in the indoor pool downstairs.

As for the outdoor pool shown above, I have not used those facilities since I lived there full time.  But, when I did, I became one of those people.   You know, the lazy summer person who just spent one day after another lounging at the pool.

As a matter of fact, the summer prior to my move west I was down at the pool almost four or five days a week.   I took a lot of time off that year and went into the same robotic mode I bet regular patrons of the Hamptons fall into.   

You know the drill.  Get up in the morning.  Look outside.  Ah, hazy, hot, and humid as only New York weather can be in the summer.   I methodically grabbed my towel and my lounge chair.   Packed the newspaper and my current book and my sun screen and a water bottle and my Walkman (yes, Walkman) and headed down to the pool next to our building.  I was there in five minutes, tops.   Seven minutes if the building custodians were slowing the elevator with a garbage pick-up run.

And then I would be there the whole day.   I would go upstairs at lunchtime to eat a quick sandwich and then back to the chair.

This was the first and only time I ever spent a summer like this.  And it heralded a lot of other firsts.

I finished about ten books over a two month period.   This is an enormous accomplishment for me.

I got the best tan I ever had in my life.

I was in the best shape of my life for some reason.   Why else run around in a bathing suit?

I listened to more current music on local radio stations than I had since I was 12.

I met neighbors I had never seen or barely talked to before.

Most importantly, it was the most relaxed I had ever been in my life.

And it never happened again.   I long for one more summer like that.  Oh, unlikely.   I worry about skin cancer.   I'm not in that same shape anymore. And I stopped listening to current day music a long time ago.

But, still, as I contemplate what to do with my New York apartment, I wonder if there could be one more summer like that.   Doing nothing and not having a care in the world.

Dinner last night:  Szechwan beef at PF Chang's.

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