Saturday, January 9, 2010
The Weekend Warrior
An orange swimsuit stretched a little snug around the mid section of a woman in her late twenties. She's untypically self-conscious of this physique-questioning whether others can tell she is pregnant or is that just a little belly. Yes, folks...hers is a terrible plight to bare, for a few months in her life she has to carry this burden. It is likely appropriate to slap her now. And please, let it be a healthy, curvaceous, non-Hollywood stick sort of person who does so. It will be a victory for Marilyn Monroe's (in spirit and form) everywhere. She arrives on the pool deck a few minutes early. Accustomed to lap swimming, competitive strokes and a striving of some semblance of speed in her exercise routines she feels out of her element this Saturday afternoon. The class is titled, "Weekend Warrior" It promises mid to high level intensity which gave her the confidence to try this class assuming that would likely weed out the blue haired, helmet permed water aerobics over 70's crowd. She was wrong. Black skirts and wrinkles like a mapped river pattern on loose, elephant skin abound. Cellulite distributes itself with no particular goal in mind. Some are sweet couples; a man assists his wife into the water. Folks buckle their foam belts around their middles. Foam "weights" are distributed, noodles are chosen, fin-hand gloves pulled into place. Gear suitable for a voyage to the moon. No instructor in view the orange belly enters the deep end and treads water. Confidently pulling a few strokes of water to position herself in an area away from the crowds. Not sure what the deal was-it seemed to be more of a self-service class she begins treading water and varying the pulls to manipulate her body for optimal fitness results. Running in place forward proved odd so she tries on the stylish belts. She decides against it as it suddenly made her feel weightless and required nearly zero in resistance. Wondering whether correct form circumvents a harder workout and heart-rate increase she assumes treading solo is best for her. Then a guy, early twenties enters the pool. He begins to teach, calling the crew inward. The alternating touch the inside of your foot thing was killer. A strange sense of oppression from the water resistance around the impending belly felt awkward. Finding herself scooting in the water without intended direction she chose to remain in the deep end but tread closer to the teacher. To her left a group of women surrounding a gent, "You're back Carla! How is your daughter?" "Oh fine. It was quite a trip. Glad to finally be home. My son-in-law thought one of us would eat each other's heads off." "Ohh, hoo, ha, ha!" And to the right, "I was trying to describe Christianity to a Chinese friend and....she didn't understand...all those people..." Alternating airborne sidekicks empowered her, liberating her enough to toss her goggles to the deck like a bra in the seventies. Just as she began to feel a rhythm a pear shaped woman with eyes like olives and lips lips like one cherry tomatoes (it seemed the pregnant woman was getting hungry) rather abruptly told her she was in the way. Apparently this section was for those wanting to "run" back and forth, and for that only. Never mind the Public Pool dogma nor the senior flirting to the north of this incident, nor the fact that even this woman had likely made it "across" likely three times in 20 minutes time, oh and pray tell, surely one mustn't consider this waif like orange woman's efforts to naturally attempt to navigate away from the crowd nor her attempts to achieve a heightened heart-rate just like the dear fruit salad woman. Surely, surely it would be best to show the naive newcomer (certain now that this belly was perceived as a months worth of double donut days) that territory is territory. Others could sense her discomfort and kindly told the late twenties orange orchid all was well, the salad lady was always like that. She felt buoyed by a community of strangers and tried to pay the fruit arrangement no mind. Pulling herself up for arm and chest strength in repetition she thought of building self up and tearing self down. Asserting ones' self kindly but having the audacity and self worth to stick to her guns. This woman in the orange swimsuit pulled herself out of the pool striving next time to be a resilient dandelion rather than a fragile tulip.