Why, howdy there. How are things with you?
We're in the middle of a scorcher of a June day here...temps at 102 and if you'd like to experience walking outside on Gilligan's Island today, just turn your oven to 450, let it preheat and then cram yourself inside. Oh, but bring along some scalding water, cuz it's not a dry heat.
Partly because of the heat and mostly because of his rambunctiousness, Shawn and I decided to get Tank one of those 32" deep doughboy swimming pools. As I type, garden hoses are working feverishly to fill what could be the ugliest lawn ornament on earth. But you know what? I'll do that for my boy. Besides, it is too hot to go outside and play during the day and there's only so much "Swamp People" I can watch, so I'm willing to give up the air conditioning in favor of some chlorinated water.
The box said the pool would be "ready for water in 15 minutes!" Just like that...with the exclamation point and everything. Obviously, the exclamation mark is Chinese for "HA HA HA, you dumbass!" Because, seriously. Here's how it goes:
Step One: Argue with spouse over proper placement of pool. Win argument. 5 minutes.
Step Two: Rake up leaves, sticks, debris from approved pool placement area. 10 minutes.
Step Three: Open heavy duty tarp packaging and lay tarp down.
Step Three, Substep A: OCD husband franticaly races against inevitability and tries to keep dust, dirt and grass from touching top of tarp.
Step Four: Unfurl pool onto tarp. OCD husband plucks and picks at pool to ensure maximum wrinkle-free enjoyment. 5 minutes.
Step Five: Locate air pump (2 minutes), locate extension cord (1 minute), try to blow up top ring of pool. Keep trying. Air pump won't seat properly in the valve; husband tries to blow up ring. By mouth. In 102 degree heat. Husband wisely gives air pump another try. Total time: 20 minutes.
Step Six: (Occurred simultaneously with Step Five): Wife puts together filter/pump. Using directions cobbled together from English, Chinese and God-knows-what-other-language. Directions are useless; wife uses them to sit on so the ants stop biting her butt. Wife creates new and intriguing combinations of profanities. Wife now coated with petroleum jelly, as per the incomprehensible instructions to lubricate O-rings. Wife now glistens in the sun and has the appearance of a large, sweaty booger. Time: 20 minutes.
Step Seven: Begin filling pool.
Step Eight: Wait. Wait. Wait some more.
Step Nine: Put kid down for nap, promising great fun upon waking.
Step Ten: Drag another garden hose to pool. Turn on full blast. Wait. Wait some more. (Husband departs to get new grips for Wife's motorcycle handlebars)
Step Eleven: Begin scooping out debris already collecting in pool.
Step Twelve: Pool filled. Total time: three hours from box to pool.
And when Tankie wakes up, we'll have the final step: Wildly Excited Toddler.
And that's worth every drop of sweat.