Friday, May 15, 2009

The Beginning of Summer

At long last, after weeks of finals and papers and registering, both for housing and for Fall classes, the school year is over. With months of one deadline after another behind me, the only thing I have to worry about is showing up to work on time several days a week and figuring out how to best divide my many leisure hours.

In the future, of course, many important issues are coming up. Three years through a five-year college career, I'm still not sure what I want to do when I graduate, and a decision must be made before very long.

"Realistically speaking, you need to decide by Christmas Break at the latest," British Professor, my academic adviser, told me during a meeting last month.

The day when I must choose a path to follow looms seven months away, but that moment falls well outside this four-month summer.

On May 12th, I drove out to Major University and took my last exam.

As I left campus, walking through bright green lawns and between brick buildings laced with flowers, I felt a marvelous sense of freedom come over me.

Leaving Campus

In addition to being my last day of school, May 12th was also Thomas's fourteenth birthday. This is an important milestone, as now he is a full teenager, no longer a new adolescent. Fourteen is also the age at which most people start high school, as Thomas will this August.

My own first days of high school from the Fall of 2002 still seem so vivid and fresh that I can't quite believe my little brother is about to embark on the journey.

The summer of 2002 was special in many ways, but one of the things that made it much more enjoyable was the erection that year of a pool in our backyard. To a fourteen-year-old, nothing could have been more exciting than the promise of sparkling water to dive into each hot summer's day and the opportunity to host friends at what suddenly became the most popular house in the neighborhood.

This summer, seven years later, the gift of a family pool is being bequeathed onto another fourteen-year-old.

For the last several days, my backyard has been a construction site.

The team came earlier this week, and in a single day of hard labor they'd brought a pool up out of the dirt.

Dirt Foundation

The Pool Begins

Pool Erected

It was late afternoon when the head of the working crew handed my mother a thick green hose, and she steadied herself as the first spouts of water shot from its plastic depths into our new pool.

Filling the Pool

Having this amenity is a huge relief; the public pool in Mountain Town is crowded, hectic, and probably dirty given all the greasy pre-teen bodies that regularly plunk into it. Now, as with every other house we've ever lived in excepting the one in Wealthy Town, we have our own place.

7 comments:

Sally-Sal said...

"Welcome to our _ool. Notice there is no 'p' in it. let's keep it that way."

Hooray for your pool!

Reya Mellicker said...

If you live in an area where it gets hot in the summer, pool-side living is a moral imperative!

Looks beautiful.

I need to look further into your blog. Will you tell me about your spiritual path here or email me? reyasdottir@verizon.net.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Reya Mellicker said...

Just did a quick scan of your blog. Wow, you are so cool! Smart. Self possessed. At your age? I was a wreck, completely out of control. I salute you and am in awe.

When people tell me they're thinking of starting a blog, I always suggest that they do what I didn't, make it anonymous, and give the blog time to develop before telling friends and family about it.

Blogging - for earnest folks like you and me - exposes so much about the inside of our heads and hearts.

I don't know what happened with your birth-mother's family but the details are not important. You drew a healthy boundary and now look at this! A beautiful blog.

Very glad to "know" you.

As for choosing what you want to do, don't worry about it too much. You are SO young - the expectation that you're supposed to understand your life's path - already! - is so harsh. Choose anything and be prepared to change your mind later on.

Cheers! Hope you have a wonderful, leisurely weekend.

Beth said...

I envy you the pool, but I prefer swimming in the lake at our cottage - although it's not heated and we have to share the water with other living creatures...
Enjoy that end-of-the-school-year sense of accomplishment and freedom!

Nashe^ said...

I NEED THAT POOL.

otherworldlyone said...

I've lived on the lake all my life...and I love it. But, oh! What I wouldn't give for a pool!

Electronic Goose said...

Honey, I graduated college 4 years ago and I still don't know what I want to do when I grow up. Do we ever?!