Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Swimming-Shimmying


I love swimming. Especially early in the mornings. You know, when the birds are twittering awake and the sun playfully winking at them from behind lush green trees swaying lightly to the cool and clear wind and …

Right, as if! When you wake up to 35 degrees at 6:00 am, the birds are tweeting rants in more than 140 characters and the brown trees trying their best to give the sun a blue eye for being such a butcher in heat. 

You exit your air-conditioned room where your cherub happily snores and it’s as if you entered a black hole spinning closest to the Sun. You gulp your cold coffee in precisely five sips lest it turns warm. As warm as the “fresh water” CPWD releases your way for an hour expecting you to tank-up and shank-down before the heat evaporates their whole office and the pipes run dry for the rest of your baking day. You water your plants and they seem too tired to raise their heads in gratitude even. Depressing. Try reading a newspaper under a fan-on-five-number and you might as well do dardey disco with your arms, neither needing eyes nor brains. 

And so, I thought of joining a DDA Sports Complex nearby to use their pool and spend some hot morning time feeling like a cool mermaid, swimming-shimmying up. And it is sitting exactly there, on a white sun bathing chair (which we Indians use like berths in a train) under an umbrella that came free with Bagpiper Whiskey, that I write this. Sitting by the side of the pool which my toes touched a few minutes back.

If I did not belong to Haridwar’s neighbour, I would have thought this is the ghat people come to dip their free sizes in after freely sinning. Citizens of a whole continent are in this pool right now, a length which takes me no more than 15 seconds to cover – all interruptions included. Like excited tadpoles in a mug of water the previous tenant left on the roof top, God alone knowing what the mug was used for. That many bobbing up and down, in that little space. And many around the pool too. 

Say that man under the shower just outside the men’s changing rooms. Little does he know this is not his ghar da shaavar, or that open air ones are for a token rinse only. He just began shampooing his hair – eyes closed tight as if his jet is landing and such chaos between the hurrying hands and the hair that soap suds are flying to stick like white whales behind another’s behind; a man’s, the one next in line who is waiting his turn, respectfully keeping his back to the lathering spandex while keeping his front reserved for public gaze. As I notice his eyes trailing to the ladies side of this family-time pool-time, I wonder which is stronger - his elastic I hear crying SOS under a monstrous belly, or that one leg which carries all his weight as the other stylishly extends forward. With hands on tilted-hips, he’s discussing politics with two men swimming breadths at the deep end. Both men periodically sprout mysterious bubbles up their back whenever they stand still, or are not burping. I switch undigested Times Now off to turn my face away, hoping for pleasanter sights and sounds. Certainly less hairy ones! And that’s when I am enamoured by a bra.

A gang of girls about 40 years of age are having a mini-kitty in 3 feet water. Two have held on to the side rails and are floating belly-up, admiring their nail paint on the toes while two others stand bent at the knees, gracefully keeping their bergs below sea level. I can make out the discussion is serious. Could be about the class 12 board results, or about Mrs Nanda’s long nose – both horrific enough topics to garner haws and hmms. One kind-looking lady's eyes just bulged forward enough to touch the strapped goggles now fogged over with what could be rage. Must have heard Mrs Mehta changed her boutique. Clandestinely. And for those couple of seconds she stood up, with knees straightened, water to the waist, hand on mouth, head shaking side-to-side I saw it. A brassier under the costume! (How lovable must their bond be that he followed her chastely to the pool! Oh envy!) The straps seemed to match the costume frilly leotard she’s wearing, so certainly intentionally worn and not forgotten to remove when in a hurry. Why, it kind of matched well with the eye shadow too.

I did decide to get in, exactly when the two teens making chapatti dives at the deep end were leaving. But at the ladder I found a face staring at mine with such concentration in its eyes and pouted mouth. What is this? Ek choti si love story happening in the pool?

The child, about three years old, looked as lost as the Batman on his floats was in this Punjabi pool. He had stopped flapping (moving as successfully as a fish on a treadmill) a couple of seconds back, and now just floated. Staring. I climbed down holding the rail, eye-to-eye, in slow motion, suspecting a loving lunge or maybe a water proof firecracker going off under me making my one piece become three. Like a prank. His older sister was trying to swim underwater but ending up much above it instead. Something was up most definitely. Well, time revealed nothing was up at all. It was all down under, for soon as my toes felt the warm water, he turned around and screamed with an ace performer's glee – ‘Mummy, I just pee-pee on my own in the middle of swimming swimming.

In the meantime, Mummy across the breadth was too busy to have heard her boy’s success story. The two political bums in the deep continued to laugh and bubble over jokes they shared, while their friend, the second-in-line, was now vigorously wiping himself with a towel near the shower, soaping-shampooing over, of course.

Might as well jump in now? Not me! 

You?

[Written for WordPress Daily Prompts : 365 Writing Prompts. The prompt for today was - Might as well Jump - What’s the biggest risk you’d like to take — but haven’t been able to? What would have to happen to make you comfortable taking it?]

86 comments:

  1. Thank you for putting me off swimming pools for some time now. It's not like I needed them anyway.

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    1. ... and I just withdrew my membership from the pool I talk about. Watering the plants in the morning is so much better. And purer! :D

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    2. When it comes to pools, I am willing to pay more and go to a gymkhana or private pool instead of a municipal pool. This is solely on the fact that higher costs will bring in fewer people to share bodily fluids in the pool with. .

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  2. Hahahahaha, true story for any pool. I call our club swimming pool Har Ki Pauri, it certainly attracts such people too.

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    1. :D Mostly such people, Ritu. Thanks for reading! :)

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  3. where would Delhi be but for its heat...btw the description was intact and comfortably funny..enjoyed reading it :)

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  4. Ewwwww...and that is precisely the reason swimming pools are such horrid places....

    But I loved the description of the scene here...beautifully captured the scene..vivid.

    Thanks!

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    1. Ha ha. Like your 'eww'. That was my first reaction after I read my own piece. :P

      Thanks a lot for liking this, Kajal, and good to see you here. :)

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  5. Reminds me of Hari Nagar Sports Complex pool(back in 1992) when I saw a group of surds in the pool minus headgear and strands of hair floating in the pool. Never mustered enough courage after that. Plus the amount of chlorine they add in the pool irritates my eyes.

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    1. You stayed around there? Or have we spoken about this when we met? I am talking about the EXACT same pool, Alka. :D

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  6. Damn, i am scared almost every-time i go for a swim, looking at the kids... :P
    A good take on the prompt..

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    1. Should be scared. Apart from using the pool like their personal potty-seat, they can be quite dangerous what with their wild wild games.
      Thank you. :)

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  7. Lovely take on the prompt. The ending, sigh! :)
    Ps, I don't like to swim :| I feel like drowning even when I shower :| :|

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    1. :D That's a nice way of telling me you are scared of water. You do bathe, right? :D
      Thanks for stopping by, Bhavya.

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  8. One big reason I hate swimming pools. In fact, parks too are extremely crowded early in the mornings that with your second step you'll start stepping on someone or the other's Nike shoes. Nice take on the prompt Sakshi!

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  9. Reminded me of the drama at my society's pool itself... But I love swimming too much to give it up.

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    1. pssk .. I love it too much to quit it too. But that day, I did not enter. :D

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  10. I've said this time and again, Sakshi.
    Your sense of humor is impeccable. :D

    As for the 'dip in the pool' part - I don't know how to swim.
    So the 'pool-shool' and the 'Swimming-Shimmying' stand out of the question...

    Thoroughly enjoyed it.
    Keep it up. :)

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    1. Thanks a lot, Poonam.
      Good to know I make you laugh.:D

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  11. Loved the description of the scene. Had me chuckling :)

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    1. Good good. Laughter is good for health. :D

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  12. Oh dear!!! and there are still people swimming in there :P I enjoyed reading your descriptions about everything around the pool :D

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    1. Arrey, what do the people know what they are swimming in? :D
      Thanks for enjoying this, Rajlakshmi.

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  13. Enjoyed each every line of the post..... Rib tickling :-D

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  14. Muuaah darling, for this laughter riot :D

    OMG....pools are such nightmares. You've just captured the picture just so perfectly. The men ( with the mysterious air bubble ), the girl with costume-se-matching bra and the little one peepee.....my goodness, they seem to swim ( pun fully intended) before my eyes as I type this comment :D
    I'm glad I never tried to learn the art of swimming.....I better remain flowing-water-challenged, than challenge myself with the task of challenging the waters with my swimmability :D :D

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    1. :D Muah!!
      Like your last sentence. :D

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  15. I love your writing Sakshi, free flowing magic which made me feel today sitting on the side of the pool, sighting the uncle adorned with white Lux soap lather, with Rupa underwear still on. and the auntyji discussing kitty party menu. And look at Mrs Nanda, she had no other place to sit and write her diary, pata nahi kya karti hai saare din, ab pool pe aake bhi koi likhta hai kya? ;)

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    1. Ha ha ha ha...I like the words you gave the aunty jis in the pool. I'd love to be in that situation, comments included. :P
      Thanks, Arpita. Love your comments always.

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  16. What a hilarious post?! Kudos to your sense of humor!
    By the way, I'm off all public pools till this remains in my memory :(

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    1. Oh dear! I am sure this is a hyperbolic pool description, Vinodini. This happens only in the pool next door to mine. Really! Go ahead and swim in yours. Just make sure no tods in the pool, that's about all. :D
      Glad you liked it.

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  17. ma'am your post makes my day ! sense of humor is fab : ) and your take on any situation is always a must read ..

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  19. Apologies Sakshi there were typos as the car moved and the ipad thing was happening so had to remove the last comment as i was unable to get the edit option.
    Yes i have jumped into such pools. Have a strong immune system and as of now nothing untoward has happened. Yet... fingers crossed...
    Swimming Pools !! i think our folks in our country still have to be trained on that etiquette. Can't be expected much Sakshi, look around and you shall find so far as etiquette goes regarding anything we are way behind. Theatres, queues, buses anywhere...
    And to those who need to be toilet trained the most i guess good thing this Nirmal Bharat Abhiyan has kicked off but when the so called educated go on a rampage in the swimming pools it is disgusting but that's so typical isn't it. Let's see how much of a change that Nirmal Bharat Abhiyan brings in to those who pee on the walls. i am hopeful.
    Nice post enjoyed going through that familiar scenario...in your humorous style of course.

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    1. You need not apologise for typo-ed comments. I will understand than anyway. No need to edit-vedit next time.
      Right you are. We have a long way to go to understand what social etiquettes are all about.
      Very glad you liked this! :)

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  20. Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha...rofl.....:-D

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  21. This probably has to be the craziest take on this particular prompt Saks, but thoroughly enjoyed it nevertheless :)

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  22. So Sakshi always go swimming in a river. They say, you cannot step into the same river twice.
    Hilarious as usual..:D

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    1. Makes sense, Preethi. :D
      Thanks for reading!

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  23. Loved your style....and your brand of humour :)

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    1. Woa! My 'brand of humour'. That sounds super, Bhaswati. Thanks for making me feel so good. :D

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  24. Great write-up! Writing is a talent, and it must not be wasted. As with everything that we had been entrusted, we should

    let it grow and share it with the world.>self

    improvement tips

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  25. I enjoy your style of writing :)
    But would have loved it more with a picture attached ;)

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    1. Ha ha ha ha. I was going to put a disclaimer under it .. PS - No pictures attached for all the wrong reasons. :P
      Thanks for reading, Ananya.

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  26. What a 'horrible' laugh riot! Now you have to promise that you will never shift out of that kloney. It's a gift that keeps giving!
    Btw, did you even wait long enough to collect your security deposit back?

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    1. It's a gift that keeps giving and expects not even Rajma in return for all the giving. I'm not going anywhere from here. Might change my flat number. It's too public now. :P
      No no. Still are members. We now play TT. Clean and safe. :D

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  27. That was very well described a post.

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  28. YOU KNOW WHAT. We have a pool right below our flat. Its cleaned everyday and hygiene is always maintained. I decided to go for a swim. Reached their and found the pool gate closed. I asked the guard who informed that a kid just pooped in there. The pool was closed for 3 days. I did not go their to try my luck..ever again!

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    1. Ha ha ha ha. See? Some sphincters and some pools just don't go together. :D

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  29. Oh noooo ... so hey did the pool water turn blue.. :) have you seen the movie Grown ups..

    Bikram

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    1. Nopes. I've seen enough of being a grown-up to go watch a movie about it. :P

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  30. Ha ha ha ! Very well described. A very typical Indian scene with uncles, aunties and the kids !

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  31. complete deja voux. i used the pool next to your old college in gk. but despite all that i still terribly miss swimming

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    1. I talk to a pool in West Delhi.
      I love swimming. Not much can make me miss it. :D

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  32. Haha!! Whenever I see kids around a pool, I run for shelter!! I fell ill thrice during a short span of one month when I initially began to learn how to swim. Unfortunately enough, those kids didn't let me :(

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    1. I always prefer pools with separate toddler pools. Not many offer that facility.
      Thanks a lot ofr reading, Nisha. I am sure you are immune to falling ill in the pool by now. :D

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  33. Loved it! I don't swim, but do enjoy getting in to a pool. I think they use a dye out here that turns the water around the pee-er blue. Never seen it myself luckily! I mean - I've never seen it happen, to anyone! I wouldn't dream of peeing in a pool!

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    1. Aah! so you are one of those hanging-around-as-if-in-private-jacuzzi kinds. But, have you attempted to learn swimming at all or it's just a dip dip thing for you. And of course, to look around?
      Also, how old are you to even SAY "I wouldn't dream of peeing in a pool". I wouldn't dream of even saying that. It would not be a part of my consciousness at all! :O

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    2. I never had the chance to even get into a pool until late into my twenties. And then such opportunities came infrequently, very infrequently.

      And I am old. Old enough to say 'I wouldn't dream of it". I didn't want to give the wrong (false) impression. And I really have never peed in a pool. Honest! Swear! Mummy swear, pappa swear and all the gods swear... :)

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    3. So you are pronounced not-guilty of peeing in a pool, but will you please stop swearing on my wall now? :D

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  34. I used to swim some 5-6 years back regularly. Lol it's exactly like you have mentioned. I could not stop myself from smiling. But I still enjoyed swimming a lot. :)

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    1. Yes, me too. I have closed my eyes to anything and everything and swum away to glory. Most pools are circuses, and otherwise, I would never have learnt to be an ace swimmer. :D
      Thanks for reading, Anmol.

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  35. Ugh! You have written the story of the swimming pool in my layout right down to chapati dives of the teens. How can people be so dirty, I don't understand -- not showering before getting in. I have stopped frequenting it for my own health and sanity :).

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    1. Good thinking, Rachna.
      Thanks for stopping by!

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  37. This post has been selected for the Spicy Saturday Picks this week. Thank You for an amazing post! Cheers! Keep Blogging :)

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  38. Hilarious post on swimming Sakshi Nanda and congrats for the well deserved spicy Saturday..very spicy gossip...btw,bod u really go to swim or play paparazzi a la snoop gate..haha. I still dunt know how to swim and haven't learned coz of the scare of troubled waters.

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    1. Learn to swim, Vishal. It's one fitness regime that is so much fun. As you can see above. :P

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  39. I've been swimming in our housing complex pool, and there are toddlers there too. Haaalllllpppp.

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    1. :D :D Delete this post from your head, Dipali.

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  40. Tried responding in various ways and gave up as all threads led to shudderland

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    1. Ha ha ha ha! :D
      I think I have got your feedback loud and clear, Khoty. :D

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  41. Sakshi, public pools are something you can't be too observant about if you want to jump in. On the other hand, your observations make for very funny reading!

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    1. That's nicely put.
      Thanks for reading! :)

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