The time and temp sign outside our local bank flashed the big 100 f today. My diabetic dog has been panting since 5 am. My son's hair looks like curly fries. My eyebrows are sweating.
Immersing myself and my children in cold water seemed to be the absolute only solution to today.
"Boys, we're going to the pool." I lacked enthusiasm in my announcement. It was more like medical advice. Their lack of exclamation points was apparent in response.
"It's too hot," one said limply.
"I'm scared of seat belts," said the other who had clearly been scorched on our earlier Target run.*
"Get in the car," I said. "I won't let the seat belt hurt you. We have to get in the pool."
They rallied. "She's right," one boy said to the other, and they got in the car.
We drive with the AC cranked up so high that we are unable to hear one and other. While last month I stood in front of my full length mirror with my nose wrinkled up at my reflection thinking, "I just won't wear bathing suits anymore," I am now driving my vehicle in nothing but a bathing suit. My ass is sticking to the leather seats and I am wondering at what point in history people started wearing clothes anyway. My phone rings. I should answer it, but I don't because I decide it's too hot to talk to people. I am so mad I have long hair.
We arrive at the pool and notice that the parking lot is full. Not like, "oh, wow it's so crowded" full, but like "holy shit there are no parking spaces" full. The whining commences from the back seat. "Think positive," I say. "Everyone in this car imagine getting a parking spot." (It's never too early to Oprah-fy your children). We drive up and down the lanes, perpetually being tricked by dainty cars that have pulled way in to their spots just to deceive the parking spot hunter. 5 minutes. 10 minutes. Children are asking for snacks. Then suddenly - out of the blue - a spot!! A slab of cement as valuable as gold. I pull in triumphantly. My children begin a chant: "Mom did it - She did it - Ma-Ma-Mom did it!"
We get out of the car. Soul crushing heat stifles us. I pull out the fully prepped beach bag with towels, sunscreen, juice boxes, snacks, goggles, dry clothes, sunglasses, hats, ...
"Mom, can I have the pool pass?"
FREEZE. I might faint. A friend passes by - "Hey, Sandy" she calls all friendly like. "See you in there!" For a second, I consider stealing my friend's pool passes. Instead, I wave back.
"Boys, get in the car."
If you think you have heard people whine, you need to multiply that sound memory by like the speed of light, and that is the sound that came out of my about to melt they're so hot children.
I drove home with moderate consideration for traffic rules and regulations. I got the pool passes. They were RIGHT THERE. Everything I've ever left at home has always been RIGHT THERE. I should just start checking RIGHT THERE before I leave.
We got back to the pool. I know it is impossible for a full parking lot to be more full because if it's full then it's full and there's no such thing as more full - but this parking lot was more full. I was circling the lot in line with other cars with potentially equally irritable women behind the wheels. That's when I saw her. The lady I would follow to her spot. Braving the heat, I did the unthinkable from an air conditioned car; I rolled down the window. "HEY! Where are you parked?" I yelled too aggressively.
"Ya' know," she said casually, as though it were a pleasant 75 degrees out, "I can't remember!" The sound of that lady's giggle is still ringing in my ears. BUT - by some stroke of luck (or heat) just then, she spotted her car. It was waayyy behind me. And there were many cars in line behind me. I broke every parking lot etiquette rule in the universe and I made a U TURN right then and there and followed that giggly broad to her spot. I parked in that spot. I took my children by the hands, shoved my passes under the security guard's scanner, and immersed my family in ... piss warm water.
The water in the kiddy pool was so warm it made me nervous that I was accidentally swimming in someone's recently used pasta water. I mean, I looked around for noodles.
"Mom, c'mon," said the big one, "I have an idea." I followed this smart smart smart boy to the big pool. We got in. It was COLD.
I smiled. I laughed. I dunked. We were having the coldest, happiest, time of our life.
"Hey Mom," said that smart smart smart big boy, "isn't today Thursday?"
"Don't I have karate in like 15 minutes?"
I'll spare you the details of the 15 minutes that followed, but suffice it to say, the most perfect parking spot was WIDE open directly in front of Karate.
*The air conditioning quality in Target in the summer is not to be under valued.