The weather in Texas has now passed the winter season. The low temperatures no longer visit the 30′s. Instead, they hover in the 70′s for a low. It is a sign that swimming in the neighborhood outdoor pool is a welcomed activity.
When I drove into the parking lot, all was quiet. No one else was swimming. That has been the pattern during my visits last year.
That beats the washing machine pool environment at the YMCA in Michigan that I so often laughed about in the past. There were regularly shared lanes with other aqua lovers. Collisions were common.
Here the only sounds are the birds starting their morning flight. Occasionally, I hear a vehicle drive by the activity center. It was time to slip into the water for my season’s first swim.
Like all swimmers, I dipped my foot in to test the temperatures. It was surprisingly pleasant. Nothing like cold waters to wake you up in the morning.
The outdoor shower was a different story. Rules dictate that all swimmers must shower before entering the water. I am a respecter of rules.
No one will ever convince me that the hot water indicator on the shower faucet is actually connected to any hot water source. It is cold! I jump in, holler, shiver and shake. Once I am layered I jump out and chatter my teeth.
Climbing down the steps into the pool is a welcome warm-up exercise. Then, I fall in just to take the immersion all at once. My goggles fit into place and the world becomes clear again. Prescription lenses make swimming much more enjoyable.
I push-off the wall. My aging body loves the sensation of floating without the pain aggravated by gravity. It has been months since I have swum. Now, like riding a bike, the motions of each stroke come alive as if they had never been dormant for a long winter.
Oddly, I feel strong. The water is parting easily in front of me. Each stroke comes with neither pain nor fatigue. I am liking this sensation.
Slowly, my heart rate is increasing. It will be sustained shortly. My breathing is timed with each of my strokes. The coordination between kicking and stroking does not need any concentration. It is a habit from years of being a water dog.
The laps peel away as the sun rises in the East. Warm rays fill the pool and the temperatures rise noticeably. Finally, it is time to hit the shower. It is a very good beginning to another season in the pool of Cinco Ranch.