I have a confession to make: I am a swimming pool snob. I was raised in a planned community of dozens of housing developments, served by seven fabulous outdoor swimming pools. These were complete with concrete decks, chairs, bath houses, vending machines, and regular visits from the ice cream trucks. I spent my summers walking to one of the 2 pools nearest my home, and later bicycling to wherever my friends were meeting. I was playing in swimming pools that were all competitive length pools with diving boards, etc. One was even an Olympic length across. Later, as a teenager, I spent my summer life guarding and coaching a swim team.
I learned many valuable lessons from these summers and I have lots of very happy memories. I wouldn't change it.
But, this has also had a few negative consequences. One is that I have poor tolerance for a cloudy or poorly maintained swimming pool- public or private. The other is that I greatly prefer large, public sized pools to back yard pools, because in my mind, these are the only ones that are any fun. Isn't this awful? On top of this, I am serving in a county with no similar services. Even the YMCA has only an indoor pool.
So I have been adjusting to life without a swimming pool to which I am accustomed. And guess what I have discovered? The virtues of an inflatable back yard swimming pool.
As I write this, my children, ages 5 and 3, are playing happily and safely in an inflatable pool in my back yard. There are several advantages to this situation:
1. They can run all they want to and we don't have to tell them to stop
2. The water is nice and cold on a HOT summer day- it comes from our well and has not been sitting in the pool all summer
3. It is nice and clean- it 's easy to maintain without any chemicals!
4. I don't have to put on a bathing suit if I don't want to
5. If I do put on a suit, I don't have to be seen by anyone
6. The kids have fun jumping out of the pool, onto the swing set, and back again
7. The kids can leap and splash and not bother anyone else.
8. Inflatable = cheap (like $20 on sale cheap)
9. When the kids get tired, they can come right in, eat lunch, take a nap, whatever. And they get good and tired!
10. No real risk of drowning (slight, slight)... the adult on duty can do other things like hang out laundry or even sit in the AC and watch out the window.
So I say hooray for no access to a large swimming pool and the invention of the inflatable back yard pool. I think life really is a lot simpler than I let it be sometimes.