Monday, July 9, 2012

Summer blues

The festivities were over.  The holiday had been productive and relaxing, the fireworks show had been oooh'd and aaah'd over, and the wine had been plentiful.  It had been a good day.

All that was on her mind was tucking the children into bed and then, perhaps, getting a little cozy with her husband.

As the headlights hit the house, she saw water rushing down the driveway.

What the hell is that? she asked in alarm.

I don't know, he said, but it can't be good.

They tried to go in the back gate, but the gate was barricaded with detritus from the deck.  Furniture was toppled.  Debris was scattered.  She couldn't quite grasp what was going on.

The pool blew, he said.

Oh, God.

That can't be right.  She had just spent the day, the whole week, really, doing pool maintenance.  This above ground pool thing had seemed like such a good idea at the time.  It had been more work than she had anticipated, but the cool water, the tan she was acquiring, had been worth the time and effort. They'd run into some hiccups along the way...

(As it turns out, it's fine to put your pool equipment on cinderblocks, but you should not put the cinderblocks in close proximity of the vinyl pool.  When kids play, the pool moves.  Friction happens.  Holes ensue.)

But they had just fixed it all up.  She had just finished that day, in fact, with fresh water, a fresh bag of salt, and new mulch around the pool.

She had even, in her optimism, bought hanging plants for outside (and her black thumb be damned).

She had decided that the pool, small and humble though it was, was her new happy place.  Floating in the pool for an hour, basking in the sunshine, was better than a Xanax, better than a couple of glasses of wine.  Floating in the pool was calorie free, and she was getting a nice tan on her pasty white body.  In just a few short weeks, she was asking the pool where it had been all of her life.

Now it had exploded?

There was too much water to deny it was happening.  But there had been too much wine to let go of her denial.

She went back around front and into the house.  As she walked through the living room, she sloshed through standing water.  She found more of the same in the kitchen.

She kicked her shoes off and sloshed to her bedroom, where the carpet squished with water.

The children were asking questions.  What happened?  What are we gonna do?  How did the pool explode?  Dad, why is Mom crying?  

The facts were these:  The aforementioned hole had ruptured.  Spectacularly.  3500 gallons of water rushed out toward their house like a tidal wave, sweeping the patio furniture, pool toys, pottery, pool equipment, mulch, and their grill across the deck.  Mulch stuck halfway up the floor-to-ceiling window was indicative of how high the water had rushed up before it receded.

Friends and family came to help.  Floors were dried.

Carpet was removed.

Sweeping,mopping, and vacuuming went on for days. Sheetrock was cut out so walls could dry.

New insulation was installed.  New sheetrock was hung.  The back deck and yard were put to rights.

All in all, she realizes it could have been worse.


Every day she stares out at her back yard with the gaping hole that used to hold her happy place, and she mourns.  She didn't know she could mourn a pain-in-the-ass above ground vinyl pool, but it left a void.  She's currently looking on craigslist for a replacement.

Too soon? she asks him innocently.

His only response is to looks at her with reproach.

And so, she will drink wine...

1 comment:

  1. Oh my!! I just shed a tear for you!! How imagine how awesome it might have looked when it happened. Sorry, that didn't help did it? What a sad & painful story.