Wednesday, 18 January 2012

How to Read in Wet Places Part Two: The Swimming Pool

When I was younger, I liked to pretend that I was a mermaid.  I've always loved swimming pools because more often than not they are shaped like lagoons out of Peter Pan, and also, there are no sharks.  I would dip under the water and butterfly kick with my arms outstretched.  Mostly, I loved the way that my hair became silky and animated under the water- the same way it felt when I put my hair under in the bath.

What better way to relax, then, than to combine two of my favourite summer pastimes and read in the pool?    I had a go at it recently, and here is what I discovered.

* Be Not Afraid of Wetness

As Ford Prefect taught Arthur Dent, never go anywhere without a towel.

Place said towel at the edge of the pool, where you can reach it, and use it to dry your hands if you need to.  Sometimes getting comfy will require this.

For what happens to wet books, see Part One.

* The Bare Necessities

You will need: An Aquaduck or similar.  A cute bathing suit and accessories (I went with Kate Moss Lasting Finish Lipstick in Shade 11 and a pair of retro sunnies from Forever New).  A great book.

Somewhat ironically, I am reading Robert Drewe's The Bodysurfers

* Relaxation Station

Being outside is sometimes relaxing enough on its own.  In the pool, floating on my aquaduck, I could look up and see the clouds moving.  The gentle turning of the thing itself was also rather soothing, as was the temperature of the water.  Pick a quiet time of the day.  The time that your neighbour usually mows his lawn is out, as is the time that the neighbour's five year old has her birthday party.  You may also want to have music playing, or a glass bottle of cider handy.  But remember, broken class and pools don't mix, so I had my cider after...

* Get Comfy

Put the Aquaduck in the pool, then climb in, leaving the book on the side of the pool in an easily reachable place where it will not be knocked or blown over board.  When climbing in, don't worry about wetting your hands.  You will need to in order to get comfortable.  Make sure you are lying longways and that your neck isn't in an awful position.  Float around a little, cool down and relax.  Then use the sides of the pool to get back to your towel and dry your hands.  Add book, and enjoy.

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