For the bulk of the summer, the city of Oneonta offers free swimming and tennis lessons for kids. I know. I was amazed our first year here, too. I kept looking around for someone to give money to.
The free lessons mean many things, not the least of which is that the kids actually learn something that will serve them well for the rest of their lives. They also mean that I have an hour and a half to myself, one where I can take advantage of the leafy trails in the park and/or knit and/or read. I've been getting a lot done, especially since I figured out how the notes feature on my iTouch works. Fab-u-lous.
I usually do a combination of all three. This morning, on my walk through the park, I decided to cross the stream that runs through the middle of the more wooded area rather than walk around to a bridge. Look, there's a line of rocks that I can use, I thought. I'm not that old. I'm nimble*! I'm like a gazelle!
For the remainder of the morning, my feet were soaked clear up to my ankles. Because I'm a dang gazelle.
The only downside (and it isn't much of one) is that summers around here, barring a few days here and there, is kinda cold, which means that the pool is flipping freezing. Maddy's lips were actually blue after her lessons. Nothing that a few minutes of basking in the sun won't cure but there is no way I'll be getting in that water with her anytime soon. My character was solidly built by a few summers of swimming lessons in a freezing Pittsburgh pool. Hers is still in the developmental phase.
Every single time I see the kids in that water, tho, I'm reminded of one of my favorite commercials. It might be for Verizon or AT&T and features a father watching his kids shovel the walk. "I'm not going out there," he mumbles, over his cup of hot coffee. "I burned my lip."**
I laugh every time.
* You should start laughing here.
** Ring any bells for anyone? I can't seem to find a link.