There, at the padlocked gate, I felt like crying. Like uncorking a downpour of big, fat, chlorinated tears. Tomorrow they’ll drain the water and install the pool cover, the burial shroud. I won’t watch, I’ll be home with the shades drawn, an abiding sadness in my heart.
You see, I’m a swimmer and a pool is where I’m happiest. From the time I was a toddler, I’ve spent my summers in the water. It’s my element, my métier. A pool is where I belong. Much more so than on dry land, where I get tripped up by gravity and equilibrium. In water, I discover gracefulness and ease, traits that remain elusive on cold, hard ground. And now that magical place is shuttered to me.
I’m left feeling as if my parole was revoked. No more happy, carefree times. It’s back to the big house and orange jumpsuits and stoolies. Orange is not a good color for me and I won’t like stoolies, either. Or prison food. But I saw The Shawshank Redemption, I know how to dig a tunnel, too.
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