Tuesday, August 5, 2008

A Final Snapshot from Deep Water Called My Home

It wasn't that I had forgotten to sit down. I had just been too busy.

But one morning the house empty and quiet, waiting for an exterminator who was actually scheduled for the following week, I sat. And remembered what I couldn't remember and remembered what I still didn't.

Always on the edge of the swimming pool's diving well, talking myself into taking my feline self into a world of complete dislike. And the constant sentences so familiar almost a radio station in my brain - "...what the hell was I thinking why am I doing this I hate this wet. cold. I must be crazy what the hell was I thinking and now for the news..."

But I would force a plunge feet first, or more recently a gently-sit-on-edge-slide -into-water-like-a-corpse but always with a muffled cry of horror at wet. cold. touching me and for the first five second feel just utterly miserable. Then regardless I would sally forth and get to work, practicing newly-learned swimming strokes or aqua-jogging about, all the while eying the clock and hoping for time travel.

Although complaining was allowed and misery accepted, there was no further discussion about my future in the water. I was getting old and this was now an essential part of my plan to stay unbedridden until I was dead. Whether I liked it or not from here on in swimming would be a thrice weekly event.

This very morning sitting on the bench, the bench bought years ago with grocery money from the 4th Avenue used odd furniture store, once a common business, now an anomaly in the midst of expensive gyms and exclusive doormen, I remembered.

Just as I sat on the edge of the diving pool, exhausted and waiting to buck up and get on with it, I sat here. A place to rest before plunging into unwanted jobs or a memory-filled home. A place where I could admit sorrow and misery and complete unhappiness at the next step. A place where I could prepare to return to a water of lost words and recover what I had always wanted to say.