“She won't let me on the raft!”
Then flip her over and splash water in her face.
It's equal parts summer camp, cruise ship and Mommy & Me class, where parents attempt to relax as apron strings stretch and lifeguards earn their pay.
One doesn't come to CCCC for leisurely floating upon calm resort waters. In the shallow end, pool toys and floats become public property. I'm looking for a more original analogy than “packed like sardines,” but nothing else seems to fit.
The deep end is that great unknown; an intimidating zone that may take a few summers to explore. Little ones cling to the edge like shipwreck survivors. The bottom, 12 feet below, is the Marianas Trench.
The high dive is a perch from which all must eventually leap in a coming of age ritual. It’s no more than 8 feet above the surface, but it's a Grand Canyon cliff when you stand up there.
I dare not do the things from this precipice that I did 30 years ago. So I settle for a cannonball, strangely proud that my personal splash zone has grown over the years.
Summer: When blond hair turns green and bodies smell like eau de chlorine. When memories and reality merge, and life seems all too real and surreal at the same time.
And waiters serve you margaritas as past blends with present at the swimming hole where everyone can feel special.
PATRICK CANEDAY is a local. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Friend him on Facebook. Read more at www.randomthoughtsonbeinghuman.com.