Not deferential enough: Bowing to reality

Posted Wednesday, January 23, 2013 in Opinion

Not deferential enough: Bowing to reality

by Gina Hamilton

I got a call from the Wiscasset Community Center today advising me that my membership was about to expire.  Instead of renewing it, I bowed to reality and let it go. 

The fact is, I used to go swimming every morning.  The WCC has a very nice pool, in a pool room surrounded by windows.  But I haven't been in more than a couple of months now, and while I have lots of excuses -- my son and heir has my car in the mornings, I've been sick, etc. -- the truth is I don't have the energy to get up in the morning, do my farm chores, and get out to the pool by 8 a.m., which is what I have to do in order to be done by the time the Jazzercize ladies come in.

The YMCA is a lot more expensive, and I just don't like the pool, which is the only reason I joined the WCC in the first place.  The YMCA pool reminds one, unfortunately, of swimming in a flooded basement while being watched overhead by people on spin cycles.  The swimmers are much more competitive and sneer at you if you're not swimming as fast as they are.  It was a lot more crowded than the WCC was, too, last time I tried it, and the water was a lot colder. On the plus side, they do have a sauna, I think. 

So I am not sure what the answer might be.  Maybe I'll go around to one of the local hotels and chat with the manager about using their pool, on the occasions when I want to use a pool.  I can get some daily tickets down at the WCC for six bucks a piece, which might not be a bad option.  Maybe I'll get serious about riding my bike or roller skating or hiking when the weather improves.  Maybe I'll do something else to get exercise that I know I need.

But somehow, I doubt it.  It's a tough sell, exercising, especially in the depths of winter when the last thing you want to do is even go out and collect the eggs and feed the chickens, let alone warm up a car, drive ten miles, and undress and redress in a revealing little tank suit, shower, and then and only then start doing your laps. 

About this time every year I look at what real estate people call "legacy properties", and which I call "Powerball Homes".  I usually settle on one and imagine what life would be like if I lived there.  My place of choice this year is a farm in Bremen, which has its own pool, mere steps from the Main Residence (that's opposed to the Pool House or the Guest House or the Green House or the Mill House or the Barn -- it's quite a Powerball Home.) It would have to be enclosed with lovely windows for year-round use, of course, and a hot tub would have to be installed.  I didn't notice whether or not it had a sauna, but I probably wouldn't use one a lot, so perhaps that could be skipped.  I'd probably manage to shift myself down to the pool every day if I had one of those, even in bitterly cold weather. 

And on rather nice days, the roof could be opened up and one could sit in the sun with an umbrellaed beverage of choice while collecting vitamin D and a healthysh tan.

This, while the small cows and the sheep gambol about in the meadows, with the full-sized horses, the dogs pant in the shade of the maple tree or dash through the woods to the mill pond to splash around, and the chickens contentedly peck about in their big chicken yard.  And I'd even erect a summer aviary for poor Paco the Parrot.  And the gardens grow tall and straight and in the fields below, wheat and corn and hay are growing to feed the critters in the winter. 

I never imagine myself actually swimming in such a scenario, mind you.  The scenario always involves a book, a chaise longue, a tasty summer beverage, and a pair of designer sunglasses.

But I suppose that doesn't really solve the exercise dilemma. 

There are exercises I could do at home and might do, if I found a DVD that I liked ... perhaps a ballet class DVD?  It would then just be a matter of setting aside an hour every day and doing it.  Oh, and buying a barre.  But I might in fact DO that, so I suppose it's worth a shot.  According to Amazon, you can get a ballet class DVD for about $20, and modern and jazz dance class DVDs for about the same price.  If I got a few of them and a barre, my investment would be about $200, about half of what my gym membership was.  But a gym membership only works if you go.

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