I know some (oh, I mean most) of you are sick of hearing me complain about being "in the real world" and working 40 hours a week, and not having time to lay out by the pool this summer because I'm in an office. And most of the time, I actually tell myself to shut up in my own head when I begin to feel sorry for myself, but then, I realized, I do have to give myself some credit, however small it may be because even though I feel 30, and even though I feel like I've been at my present job for 2 years, I am merely, a 23 year old, 5-month married newby, who graduated college only 6 months ago, and this is my first full-time working summer.
I caught myself feeling saddened, unhappy if you will, this past week and I couldn't figure out why, but I think it all stems back to a few weeks ago when Collin and I paid a visit to Burdett Park= an adolescent lifeguard's dream. So even though I'm not even a legally certified lifeguard anymore, I really think once you're a lifeguard, you're always a lifeguard. I thought about digging up old swimming/lifeguarding pictures of me, but I don't think I even have any. Sad.
Here's a top 10 list of why lifeguarding is the best job EVER: (for teenagers that is. eww. can you picture a 50 year old lady lifeguarding? ick.)
10. Free soda. Okay, so this only lasted about a month, but my first ever lifeguarding job was at Bower's Park, and if you brought your own cup, you could fill it up as much as you wanted with soda from the concession stand, no charge. I remember getting very jittery because sun+mountain dew+no food=jitters. Not the best quality in a lifeguard, but eh, I was 16. After a month at the outdoor pool I got shafted and transferred to the indoor pool at Macabee, where I remained the rest of the summer and for the next 5 or 6 years.
9. No manual labor. Okay, most of you who know me well might say I'm the tiniest bit say lazy? Lifeguarding, while an important job because the patron's survival is determined on how fit you are, realistically isn't at all tiring. You sit in a chair for 15 min intervals, watching people swim. I think in the 6 years I was a lifeguard, I MIGHT have jumped in after 10 people? MIGHT have. The other 10,000 times I jumped in was to cool off from the sweltering Alabama heat.
8. Cool flip flop tan lines and pale racoon eyes. Each summer, all the lifeguards would have a contest to see who could tan the darkest, the fastest. Although over a period of time, my skin would develop a nice tan, it didn't happen in one day, and if I didn't wear sunscreen, I'd burn. Needless to say, I never won that contest, but I always used the flip flop tan lines to meter the rate I was tanning.
7. Playing cards. I learned how to rule at playing Spades. I played neal (not sure of the sp. here) and blind neal, and I even became pretty good at Hearts. We loved it when it stormed because we got paid to play cards, and even when it was sunny, we'd sneak some games in on our rotation in the office.
6. Swimming. If you didn't know, I was a competitive swimmer in middle/high school. I love the pool, and my mom claims I taught myself to swim by jumping in one day and swimming underneath the water. Who knows how true that is, but regardless of that, I've always been a natural swimmer. So how cool is it to get paid to sit by the pool and be able to jump in and swim every few minutes? So cool!
5. No angry customers. There are always going to be those people who complain about getting out when it's lightning or that the chemicals are too strong, or the bathroom is nasty (which it was because we were in charge of cleaning them, and we would just sprinkle cleaner everywhere and spray it down), but all in all, most patrons were happy to be at a pool, on a sunny day, and not stuck inside somewhere. We didn't have to worry about serving food, or handling money, or getting yelled at...just people drowning :)
To be continued...