Thanks to some very hospitable friends, Paul and I spent most of Saturday floating in a pool overlooking an expanse of green fields and forests adjacent to a very beautiful country house. It was one of the more rejuvenating experiences I've had in quite some time.
Aside from the good company, I believe that the aqua noodles we all were hanging on to were a key contributor to the extreme relaxation that ensued.
For the uninitiated, the aqua noodle allows one to float in a variety of configurations (sitting side saddle, sitting straddling the thing, arms draped over, noodle wrapped around the waist, the permutations are endless). You can bob along for hours on end, virtually weightless. The experience on Saturday reminded me of a time 20 years ago or so when my sister and I were floating aimlessly in a lake in the Sierra Nevadas on some sort of device, singing the song "Bobbing Along" from Bedknobs and Broomsticks. I recall being blissfully happy, not unlike I was on Saturday.
Now I ask you, why is it that once we become adults we abandon these sorts of simple, inexpensive toys which have the capacity to bring such joy? And only reclaim them in old age when we need them for an afternoon aquacize class? In the middle of life we trade them in for more expensive yet less fun pool toys such as the floating chair. What, may I ask, is the point of those? It's virtually no different than sitting in a patio chair!
I say that this summer we take back the noodles. Spend $2.99 and grab yourself one, you'll thank me once pool season starts in earnest.