Swimming alone in a big pool
Not long ago, I had the rare opportunity to enjoy a large swimming pool.
First, exercise, the main reason I’m at the pool in the first place.
After a few leisurely laps to warm up, I tried swimming underwater from one target to another in one breath. The results were pretty appalling. I haven’t swam much in the past few years, and it shows.
Maybe I wasn’t swimming very fast because I wasn’t putting in that much effort and I wasn’t using the faster freestyle technique. More likely, it was because somewhere in the years where I stopped swimming so regularly, I picked up the habit of blowing out most of my air through my nose as I go underwater, and less air = need to come up for air more often. So I practiced until I could comfortably go from one target to another.
I checked my phone, not even half an hour had passed since I got into the pool. After going through all the hassle to prepare for the swam, I should stay longer.
So I explored.
I swam along the bottom of the pool (something I did a lot as a kid) and took a close look at the tiles that made up the giant design visible from outside the pool.
The sun was also shining on and off while I swam. I’m one of those people who don’t want to get dark, so I wanted to avoid the sun. Underwater, it was easier to see where the sun hit. I headed for the darker shadows, and avoid the brighter areas that rippled as the water surface shifted from the wind and my movements.
Underwater, I just enjoyed the muffled world beneath the water surface. It made me think about Haruka from the anime Free!, a guy who really loves water. There’re more ways to enjoy the water than playing monkey in the pool with friends. Like turning around to look towards the sky and watch the water ripple above me.
Along the way, I saw one of the fittings at the bottom of the pool floor blowing tiny little bubbles. I had time, so I put my hand over the fountain of bubbles. The bubbles stuck to my skin. I’ve never really noticed that before.
After the exploring came more swimming, because the whole point of going into the pool was to exercise. It mainly consisted of me running away from the sun that returned.
As I swam, I stopped now and then in the shadows to create my own bubbles. I started with my hands above the water surface and clawed down as I was trying to pull the sky underwater. I did this a few times in a row, then hopped forward as the bubbles rushed towards the surface. Instant DIY jacuzzi, with a side of arm exercise.
And that was how I spent my hour as the only swimmer in a massive swimming pool.