We spent the better part of the month of June preparing to put a permanent safety cover on the swimming pool at our house at the Ross Barnett Reservoir. After my daughter graduated high school and left home for college in 2011 pool maintenence became more of a chore than I was really interested in and I’m too cheap to hire it out. Then we moved to the country house in Sebastopol and started doing renovations there and plain and simply put the pool was way too much for wife Danny and I.
When we bought that place in 1997 my daughter was only four years old and she and I could be found frolicking in the water each and every evening of summer as lightening bugs danced at the edge the woods. We usually opened the pool in late February and we would do a Polar Bear Plunge at that time just to say we did. It was always frigid. I still shudder.
The pool is huge. The main body of water measures 20 by 40 feet and at the end where the sunroom is there is an additional 10 by 16 shallow portion. There are 44 thousand plus gallons of water to chlorinate and vacuum at summer stage and that takes a whole lot of time.
With a pool, too, it is my firm belief that if it isn’t used regularly and splashed, and cannonballed, and jackknife dived into it doesn’t circulate properly and stir up all the little particles the filter is supposed to filter out.
For the vast majority of the last 23 years there were kids from all around — adults too — doing all those fun pool things and keeping it stirred and filtered and crystal clear.
Toddlers turned to teens and then full grown adults almost over night and the pool parties petered out and the adults got older and busy with all the other things that it takes to bring toddlers to teens to full grown adults and before we knew it the pool was green and the pump was broken (again) and it was taking more days in February to get it clean enough just for the plunge.
Soon it was April, then May, then June before any work was done, and being there some weekends and not others, with leaves and pine straw constantly trickling to the surface, the temporary tarp has stayed on year-round for the last couple of years.
The time had come!
So at the beginning of June we started the process of cleaning up around and about that monstrosity of a mess that the neighborhood kids had once called paradise and from a reputable pool supply company I ordered a strong safety cover that supposedly one can walk across. One picture even shows a small elephant standing in the center of a display model. I’m not chancing that, though. I know what is beneath that cover.
The order was shipped. Plans were made and time slotted out for a couple of weekends of work and we waited for the cover’s arrival. The UPS tracking number on my computer showed it was delivered right on time to The Scott County Times office, but it was nowhere to be found.
A text message assured me it was delivered, and with the COVID-19 pandemic engulfing the land all the telephone numbers typically used for reporting delivery problems were answered by voice mails saying no one is working in their office. Back on the computer the message said “delivered to 311 Smith Ave., Forest, MS.” Further research found the package was delivered to an Ohio location with neither 311 nor Smith listed anywhere in the address, and we were back to square one. Frustrated too.
I have no idea if the original cover was ever retrieved from Ohio or not — really don’t care at this point either — but the replacement cover arrived last week nearly a month late and just in time for a Fourth of July fitting.
Two days and 28 3/4 inch anchor holes drilled in concrete and rock with a carbide bit on a mean hammer drill, and two very sore arms and two stiff legs, and the big ole swimming pool is no longer an eyesore. In fact it is nice out there again.
We lounged around on the deck Sunday afternoon and reminisced about all the fun times that were had there in “paradise” and we even made a few plans for the new look too.
All good things come to an end, I suppose. Yep, that’s what they say, all good things come to an end. Hmmm. But, does anything truly come to an end in paradise? Does it? Time will tell. Yes, time will tell!