I remember my first, and worst sunburn ever! I also remember my first belly flop and my first (and last) bikini – all wrapped up in the smell of chlorine, the feel of paint peeling from concrete blocks and the deafening sound of happy, screaming kids.
My hometown outdoor swimming pool no longer exists but the sights and sounds of an outdoor pool bring back a flood of memories.
As the second youngest in a large family, I am sure my mother used that swimming pool as a bribe, a relief and a reward. I am certain she looked forward to that pool opening every June as much as I did.
She would bribe us with lake time or pool time as a way of getting the garden weeded or the peas shelled. I can’t speak for my siblings, but I would do almost anything, quickly, to get into that outdoor
4 pool. Our nearby lake was great but it had leeches and we learned to enter and exit the shallows of the lake quickly and body scan each other upon leaving!
Maybe it’s because I was born under the sign of the Aquarian, or because growing up we really had no other source of cheap fun, I still cannot get enough of the water – rivers, pools, lakes and oceans.
So, like this picture of the Routes staff at the pool’s edge, I am ready to jump in! Eagerly waiting for that spring sun to melt the snow and let the summer memories begin!
If your summer water memories are built around fishing, you are going to love the fish tales we are showcasing. See the winning entries from a recent short story fiction contest with the Okotoks Art Gallery. If horses or dogs are your thing, the art of the talented Shannon Lawlor, or the story of incredible therapy dogs are sure to inspire. And if digging in the dirt is more your pace, then the permaculture story will have you running for the seed catalog!
Whatever your summer desires, I hope that you take some time to relax and read… and don’t forget your Routes!
About Dr. Lander Memorial Pool
One of the last remaining outdoor swimming pools in Alberta, this Turner Valley pool was hand-dug by volunteers and opened near the Sheep River in 1936. The pool was named after long-serving community members, Drs. Harry and David Lander.
Since then the pool has undergone numerous changes and upgrades, many of which can be attributed to volunteer Cheryl Gross. Cheryl, Pool Operations Coordinator, won her first swimming award in this very pool in 1969 and has been volunteering ever since, even taking her summers off from her City of Calgary position to make sure the facility is fit for families every summer.