My $100 Summer Vacation


My $100 Summer Vacation

maldives-666118_640In June, on a particularly hot afternoon, the little girl for whom I babysit looked at me with her big brown eyes and asked, "Can we go to the pool?"

Of course, I replied. Last summer, I put my swim suit in my trunk so I would be ready to head to the pool with my babysitting charges. They never wanted to go to the pool last summer so my swim suit still sat in my trunk.

But on this hot June afternoon we headed to the pool. When we arrived, I explained that I would watch them but wouldn't join them in the pool. You know how it is -- we never feel like the world is ready to see our body in our swim suit.

But, when the little girl entered the water, she looked at me and said, "Ooooohhhhh, Denise, you've got to come in. The water is so warm."

So in I went. It was heaven. We had so much fun -- we swam, played games, reveled in the relief the pool provided from a hot day. After that pool excursion, I decided to buy a pool pass for our suburb's two community pools. I decided the pool pass could pass for my summer vacation, that trips to the pool could provide an easy and happy break for me. I didn't make it as often as I wanted in July and early August but I did make it three times this week -- Sunday, Wednesday and today.

The pass cost me $100 but it brings me to another place. I'm transported at the community pool, free to simply sit. I swim laps during the 10-minute adult swim that happens every hour. My laps are neither fast nor fabulous in form. I swim what can pass for the sidestroke, the back stroke and the freestyle stroke, up and down, up and down the length of the pool. As I swim on my back, I gaze at the clouds and feel like I'm floating right with them.

There's plenty of room for me at the pool but there's no room for my problems. I'm focused only on the sun, the kids, the life at the community pool.

When I arrive home after my respite at the pool, my dad asks, "How was the pool?" I always answer with a thoroughly satisfied sigh, "It was marvelous."

Simply put, it's the best summer vacation I could have ever bought for $100.

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My son and I just came back from a swim at our town beach. We, too, have a membership and have been zipping over for a quick swim during the last couple of weeks. It is so wonderfully restorative! I am so glad you are taking this time for yourself!


Thanks for reminding us that in caregiving sometimes a simple frugal solution can provide just as much respite as a fancy expensive one. Hope you get several more vacations in this season!


Yay Denise!


And all because your little charge coaxed you into the pool. Wise little girl! :)


I love how you wrote there is plenty of room for you at the pool but no room for your problems. That's the Golden Egg right there. I wish I could rub sunscreen on your back.

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